Edward Norton’s production company Class 5 Films is facing a multimillion-dollar lawsuit after a fire destroyed the building in Harlem where he was filming Motherless Brooklyn, reports Deadline. The March 22 fire killed FDNY firefighter Lt. Michael Davidson.
Erica and George Cruz, a couple that lived in the building, is suing Class 5 and the building’s owner for damages, including the loss of personal possessions and their rent-controlled apartment. According to their suit, the fire began in the basement where “certain equipment, including highly flammable equipment” was kept. The couple also claim that the company knew about the flames but did not accurately communicate the emergency. The suit states, “When representatives of Class 5, Inc. became aware of the fire, they did not warn the tenants in the building; in fact, they misled the tenants into believing there had been a fire that had been extinguished.”
In an earlier statement given to People, the production company claimed, “As soon as we noticed smoke coming up into our set, our crew immediately alerted the fire department and began alerting residents of the building even as we evacuated our cast and crew.” The statement continued, “To our great sorrow, we now know that a NYC firefighter lost his life battling the blaze that grew, and our hearts ache in solidarity with his family.”