Toronto Model Who Went Viral Sues Fiji Water
A Canadian model who starred in a pair of Arkells music videos is suing the bottled water company that made her a viral sensation.
Kelleth Cuthbert, whose real name is Kelly Steinbach, made a splash for Fiji Water by photobombing celebrities on the Golden Globes red carpet on Jan. 6.
According to The Blast, Cuthbert has filed suit accusing Fiji Water’s owner, L.A.-based The Wonderful Company, of creating cardboard cutouts of her to promote the brand in the wake of the Globes.
Cuthbert alleges the marketing campaign was launched while the company was still negotiating a deal with her agent. In fact, she claims she was pressured into "video recording a fake signing of a fake document to simulate Steinbach signing on as a Fiji Water Ambassador."
The 31-year-old Toronto native wants Fiji to stop using the cardboard cutouts and to compensate her.
In a statement, the company called the lawsuit “frivolous and entirely without merit.” It read: “After the Golden Globes social media moment, we negotiated a generous agreement with Ms. Cuthbert that she blatantly violated. We are confident that we will prevail in Court.”
Fiji Water was founded by Canadian entrepreneurs David Gilmour and Peter Munk in 1996 but was acquired in 2004 by The Wonderful Company.
Cuthbert appeared in the videos for Arkells’ 2008 song “Pullin’ Punches” and 2014’s “11:11.”