LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A couple — husband and wife documentary producers — are speaking out about being set up by a gotcha journalist trying to expose what he calls the hypocrisy of Hollywood celebrities.
The couple, Josh and Rebecca Tickell, were producing an anti-fracking documentary for their Green Planet Productions.
They were set up by James O’Keefe who was filming an undercover video at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
“We would do things differently if we had it to do it again,” said Josh Tickell of Green Planet Productions.
“They sat the trap and we dove in head first,” said co-producer and wife Rebecca Tickell.
The Tickells asked celebrity friends, like Mariel Hemingway and Ed Begley Jr., to also attend the meetings.
“Ed and Mariel were there for us a favor to help raise money to make an important film. They got duped like we did,” says Rebecca
Secretly recorded, they say a man posing at a Middle Eastern oil man said he would be willing to front money for their anti-fracking documentary as long as the source of the money was kept quiet.
The Tickells acknowledge they signed a non-disclosure agreement but that no money was exchanged.
“It’s very salacious to release video about discussions of what could be possible but the deed was never done,” said Josh
The couple said they have been frightened by the concept of fracking for two decades. They have been producing pro-environment films for nearly as long.
The couple insists they were entrapped.
O’Keefe went on Fox News Wednesday evening to say secret funding is widespread in Hollywood and he was merely trying to expose it.
“There are some serious issues about the cover up of the funding and just how many movies in Hollywood are funded by these Middle Eastern groups,” he said.
For their part, the couple is sorry they got friends dragged into the controversy. They insist they were just trying to bring an important problem to the public.
For more about the couple’s documentary, click here.