Billy McFarland says Fyre Festival II is ‘finally happening’

McFarland asks his followers to tell him why they should be invited

Peony Hirwani
Tuesday 11 April 2023 05:49 BST
Fyre Festival founder admits he was 'wrong' in first interview since being released from prison

The creator behind the botched Fyre Festival has teased a possible resurgence of the event.

In 2017, Billy McFarland was at the centre of a scandal in which ticket holders were lured to a “luxury music festival” held on Pablo Escobar’s former private island in the Bahamas, with Migos and Blink-182 booked to perform.

However, the event was a disaster after festivalgoers faced issues with food, security, and accommodation.

In 2018, McFarland pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud, was sentenced to six years in prison – but was released early in March 2022 – and ordered to pay back £23m to festival investors. The entire scandal around the festival was the subject of two documentaries, including one by Netflix that aired in 2019.

“Fyre Festival II is finally happening,” McFarland tweeted on Monday (10 April).

In the tweet, he asked his followers to tell him why they should be invited.

When a fan replied to McFarland’s tweet asking why he “shouldn’t be in jail”, he wrote: “It’s in the best interest of those I owe for me to be working.

“People aren’t getting paid back if I sit on the couch and watch TV. And because I served my time.”

Many users also joked about the idea of a potential Fyre Festival II.

“If you need any help with planning, there’s a great documentary on this!” Join Circle CEO Satvik Sethi wrote.

Another user said: “I’ll show up with 100 crates full of bananas. No one will go hungry this time around.”

“I’m just waiting for the documentary sequel,” said another.

Ja Rule and McFarland in Netflix’s Fyre Festival documentary
Ja Rule and McFarland in Netflix’s Fyre Festival documentary (Netflix)

Last year, in his first interview since being released from prison, McFarland admitted that he was “wrong” to go ahead with the Fyre Festival.

“I was wrong,” McFarland said during an appearance on Good Morning America. “I messed up. I was so driven by this desperate desire to prove people right. I had these early investors, backers, employees, and I think I was just so insecure that I thought the only way to prove myself to them was to succeed and that led me down this terrible path of bad decisions.”

“I need to apologise and that is the first and last thing that needs to be done. I let people down,” he said.

“What I told investors was wrong and I think the hardest thing for me is the trust that I violated... whether it was friends, investors, or employees, people gave up a lot to try and make this happen. How do I call them now and look them in the eye when I let them down? I just really should have cancelled everything and stopped lying.

“I should have listened. There is no excuse.”

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