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No 'reality' without a little drama

by Rick Thomas
| April 8, 2010 9:00 PM

COEUR d'ALENE - It wouldn't be a proper "reality" show without a bit of drama, contrived or otherwise. This week, shop owners in downtown got a taste of the conflict that producers of the shows so love, courtesy of a former employee, who anonymously left slips of paper in doors, calling the "Icon Coeur d'Alene" filming a "sham wow."

COEUR d'ALENE - It wouldn't be a proper "reality" show without a bit of drama, contrived or otherwise.

This week, shop owners in downtown got a taste of the conflict that producers of the shows so love, courtesy of a former employee, who anonymously left slips of paper in doors, calling the "Icon Coeur d'Alene" filming a "sham wow."

"He gave himself away," said Brad Kline, director and owner of production company North Pole Mystery. "He says that all the time."

Jesse "J.D." King, who says he quit within days of the announcement that the show would be shot at Icon, a Sherman Avenue dance club, and other locations in North Idaho in the coming months, said the concept for the show and the name of the production are his.

"It was my idea," he said. "I found out it was all to sell alcohol."

That's not true, said Jerry Goggin, the owner of Icon who will be featured in the show.

"I only met him a couple of times," Goggin said.

He, Kline, and Luke Jiles, promoter of the production, said a nondisclosure agreement between the parties means they will not discuss financial arrangements. Goggin would only say that he, along with several others so far, is sponsoring the project.

In an e-mail to The Press, King said, "FACT: Jerry paid for Brad's flight here, he stroked him a check for $2,000 when he landed in Spokane, and so on ... Brad doesn't even have the equipment or the resources."

Goggin says that is not true.

He and the others also deny allegations by King that they have promoted themselves as being affiliated with Bravo, MTV or other networks. That, too, is covered by the nondisclosure agreement, they said.

"There is no credible network behind this staged production," King's note said.

Asked by The Press to provide names of individuals who had been misled, King instead had several friends from California and Post Falls call to support his allegation that the North Pole Mystery name is his.

"Jesse had it long before," said Charles Dean, a friend from Post Falls who called King an entrepreneur and a writer of movie scripts. "He has been using that name for years."

"It never was registered," King said.

In an earlier interview, before he was fired, as Kline and Jiles say, King said he had worked in construction and mentored filmmakers in Hollywood and Los Angeles, and was going to help write and promote the show, though his written communications were filled with spelling and grammatical errors.

By Wednesday, King had stopped returning e-mails and his phone was not in service.

"He is a disgruntled employee," Jiles said. "He threatened to destroy us, our equipment, the project."

He and Kline agree the controversy follows the old entertainment axiom, "There is no such thing as bad publicity." They would love to convince King to get on the other side of their cameras.

"His disinformation is helping us," Jiles said. "We have been trying to get him on the show."

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