Billy Otto has slammed Netflix‘s controversial reality show Byron Baes for allegedly being misled by producers.
The Byron Bay rocker claimed he was told the show was a positive and empowering documentary but he was disappointed after seeing the press release on April 8.
‘The way that it was pitched to me was that it was really going to zone in on interesting people in Byron Bay and creatives and even creative influencers,’ the 33-year-old told The Daily Telegraph.
‘I felt lied to’: Singer Billy Otto (pictured) slammed Netflix’s Byron Baes after ‘being misled and offered $200-a-day to join the series’
But after seeing the press release, Billy said he felt ‘disappointed and upset with the way the situation was dealt’.
‘I felt a bit lied to and so when they called me back to see if I still wanted to be on the show after the press release, I was just done.’
‘They were talking about ‘hot Instagrammers’, fights, drama and flings, I thought “this is not me at all”.’
‘I’ve got a whole career that I’ve been building for the last 10 years, which is built on authenticity and for me to be paid $200 a day to potentially lose my career.’
Daily Mail Australia has contacted Netflix for comment.
‘I felt a bit lied to’: The Byron Bay rocker claimed he was told the show was a positive and empowering documentary but he was disappointed after seeing the press release on April 8
It comes after Billy confirmed on Instagram on Thursday he no longer had anything to do with the ‘docu-soap series’ which outraged locals before filming even began.
The musician shared a photo of himself at the beach holding an anti-Byron Baes poster, and explained in the caption why he’d decided to pull out.
Billy, whose name appeared in The Daily Telegraph‘s leaked cast list on Tuesday, said he did not believe the show would be a ‘true representation of the soul of Byron’.
‘Yep, I feel embarrassed’: It comes after Billy confirmed on Thursday he no longer had anything to do with the ‘docu-soap series’ which outraged locals before filming even began
In addition to saying the Netflix production ‘doesn’t align’ with his personal values, he also claimed it did not receive blessing from the local Indigenous Elders.
‘Yep, I feel embarrassed to have been associated with this show,’ he said.
Billy explained he’d initially agreed to join the show after a casting producer had expressed an interest in his music and advocacy for men’s mental health.
He’s out! Billy explained he’d initially agreed to join the show after a casting producer had expressed an interest in his music and advocacy for men’s mental health
Billy claims it wasn’t until later that he learned what the show was really about.
‘I began to understand later the true nature of the program, and it became clear to me that I didn’t align with the ethos of the show… I don’t believe that the world needs a show like this right now,’ he said.
He said he wanted to help preserve the ecology of the Bryon region and didn’t support the ‘hyper-gentrification’ of the area.
Billy suggested that Netflix ditch their show about ‘influencers’ and instead make a more thoughtful series ‘working alongside Bundjalung Elders and capturing the dreamers, creatives and custodians that help make this place special’.
Uncovered: Billy’s powerful message to Netflix comes after the Byron Baes cast members were revealed by The Daily Telegraph earlier this week. Pictured: Elias Chigros
Billy’s powerful message to Netflix comes after the Byron Baes cast members were revealed by The Daily Telegraph earlier this week.
Joining the cast are former reality stars Nathan Favro, from The Bachelorette, and Elias Chigros, from Love Island Australia.
Co-creative director of local boutique BISQUE Hannah Brauer will also appear, alongside Byron Bay ‘It couple’ Dave Frim and Saskia Wotton.
Coming soon: The controversial new series will feature a variety of local influencers, including Elle Watson
Secret’s out: Filming for the series is already underway in Byron Bay. Pictured: Saskia Wotton
Others in the cast include investment company employee Elle Watson, influencer Jade Kevin Foster and spiritualistic therapist Simba Ali.
Rounding out the cast is Kyle Sandilands’ former assistant-turned-manager Alex Reid, fashion designer Jess Bell and her model sister Lauren.
Claim to fame: Joining the cast are former reality stars Nathan Favro (pictured), from The Bachelorette, and Elias Chigros, from Love Island Australia
The unveiling of the cast comes after a handful of so-called Byron locals recently paddled out into the ocean to protest the show, while others stood by with placards that read ‘give Netflix the flick’ and ‘consult traditional owners’.
Ben Gordon, owner of The Byron Bay General Store, led calls to snub production – and is asking other local businesses to do the same.
‘They’ve simply turned up unannounced and they are proposing to drag our name through the mud, and make millions of dollars without offering anything back to the community,’ he told Today hosts Karl Stefanovic and Allison Langdon.
Making a name for herself: Co-creative director of local boutique BISQUE Hannah Brauer (pictured) will also appear, alongside Byron Bay couple Dave Frim and Saskia Wotton
Mr Gordon said the prospective reality series is ‘a complete misrepresentation of who we are as a community’.
‘Today, what we’ve seen, is the real Byron, the community coming together for issues that we believe in,’ he said.
Nick O’Donnell, Netflix’s director of public policy, recently travelled to the NSW town ‘for crisis talks with stakeholders’ as the backlash continues to grow.
Life of luxury: Others in the cast include investment company employee Elle Watson, influencer Jade Kevin Foster (pictured) and spiritualistic therapist Simba Ali