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The movie was slated to premiere on Jan. 19, the first day of the festival, and was being touted in
the promotional materials as a "rags-to-riches-to-rags story."

Siegel disputed that line, and said his reputation has been damaged by the materials' claim that
his timeshare empire had fallen apart.

Siegel is suing the Sundance Institute, which runs the festival; "Queen of Versailles"
director Lauren Greenfield; and her husband, executive producer Frank Evers. He is seeking
compensatory and punitive damages in the suit, which was filed in federal court in Florida,
according to the news site TheWrap.

Siegel is the CEO and president of Westgate LTD, a privately held timeshare and development
company that owns and operates 27 resorts nationwide, including resorts in Orlando and at the
ski resort in Park City, Utah, the home to the Sundance Film Festival.

Siegel claims that in August 2007, Greenfield approached him about documenting the
construction of Versailles, a mansion Siegel built in Orlando that has 90,000-square-foot and is
considered to be the biggest house in the U.S.

Greenfield filmed the construction over the course of four years. During that time, Siegel
offered Greenfield and her crew 165 room nights at his local resorts, and accommodated them at
Versailles. Greenfield was "the beneficiary of [Siegel's] hospitality," the suit claims.

The last time Greenfield and her crew visited Siegel, in November 2011, he told her "he was
doing well, that he had successfully resolved his financial issues and that Westgate remained
highly profitable. This fact should have been obvious to her based upon the festive mood in
Siegel's home and the fact that she was once again provided with free accommodations."

During the visit, Greenfield never mentioned that she would be taking "Queen of Versailles" to
Sundance, the suit claims. He found out two days later that it had been picked for the festival and
was slated to be shown on the opening day, Jan. 19.

A Sundance press release about the "rags-to-riches-to-rags story" claims Siegel's "timeshare
empire collapse[d]" and that his "house [was] foreclosed."

"Taken individually and collectively, these statements portray Siegel and Westgate as essentially
broke and out of business," the suit claims. Refuting those claims, the suit says Siegel's timeshare empire never collapsed and that Westgate is stable and profitable. Construction only stopped on Versailles because Siegel "decided to dedicate all of his available funds and efforts to Westgate" after the economic collapse began in
2008, the suit suggests.

Next: Port St. Lucie Man Sentenced in Timeshare Fraud case

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