Courtney Love + OxyContin Heiress in Spat Over Appearance Money
Amid an opioid epidemic in the United States, Hole frontwoman Courtney Love said she turned down $100,000 to attend a Fashion Week show for LBV, the fashion label of Joss Sackler, who is known as the "OxyContin heiress" as the wife of Purdue Pharma's David Sackler. But screenshots of emails between Love's team and Ms. Sackler appear to show the rocker actually asked for more to attend.
Purdue, as the maker of the highly addictive painkiller OxyContin, has been at the crux of billions in lawsuits over their role in the opioid crisis, Spin noted. Purdue was founded and is owned by David Sackler's family. Love, a recovering addict herself, was married to Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, who died from suicide following a drug overdose in 1994. See Joss Sackler's screenshots of her apparent communications with Love's team, followed by Love's subsequent objections, down toward the bottom of this post.
"I am one of the most famous reformed junkies on the planet — my husband died on heroin," Love said in a statement to Page Six Sunday (Sept. 8) before the LBV Fashion Week show in New York City on Monday (Sept. 9). "What is it about me that says to Joss Sackler, 'I will sell out to you?' Well I won't."
Love continued, "I never would take their money — Joss is delusional, talking about her fashion line … This request from Joss Sackler is shameless and offensive after everything I, many of my friends, and millions of other addicts have been through with OxyContin. I'm sober, but I will always be an opioid addict, it doesn't vanish. I will always be that, I am just in recovery."
However, shortly after Love's statement, Ms. Sackler responded on Instagram with screenshots purportedly showing an exchange between her and Beth Morris, an apparent representative for Love. In the messages, Morris indicates Love would only attend the LBV show for a minimum $275,000 fee, saying the "money would have to be higher." ("Fake news," the heiress and designer's caption displayed, rebutting Love's notion that she refused to "sell out.")
In the communications, the precarious optics of Love supporting the beneficiary of an opioid-making drug company — one accused of profiting from an epidemic that kills 46 people each day, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — are duly noted. "We also like to protect [Love's] image as much as poss[ible]" Morris writes. "The association w/ … pharmaceuticals here tough one."
The original request to Love from Sackler's reps illustrate an attempt to downplay the label's connection to the drug company. ("The brand has no relation to Purdue … other than Joss is married to the family.")
In a response on social media Monday (also shown below), Love writes to Sackler, "You lying piece of shit. Come for me. I was born for this fight." In another, the musician exclaims, "Fake news? You asshole!"
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