Billy McFarland was relatively unknown within and outside the American clubbing circles until April 2017 when a VIP party he organized turned into a nightmare, leaving attendees stranded and in total shock.
McFarland, who co-founded the festival along with popular American rapper Ja Rule (born Jeffrey Bruce Atkins), was later arrested and arraigned before the court of law. Currently, the Fyre media CEO is serving a six-year jail term in a federal prison after he pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud.
Below are all the deets about the convicted Fyre Media boss. You’ll also get to know who his parents and girlfriend are and if he is related to American actor, writer, and director Seth MacFarlane.
Billy McFarland Biography
The Fyre Festival founder, whose real name is William McFarland, was born on the 11th of December 1991, in the United States of America. However, he was raised by his parents in the Short Hills section of Millburn, New Jersey.
After completing his high school studies, McFarland proceeded to Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, to study computer engineering. He, however, dropped out of the institution after spending less than nine months with the intention of setting up an online advertising platform called Spling.
He briefly served as the CEO of the business venture before associating himself with an elite club for New York millennials known as Magnises. Situated in a West Village townhouse. Magnises membership costs $250 while members were given discounted access to high-profile events and also invited to come and attend lectures, dinners, cocktail parties, and art shows.
However, it was later found out that the company was not delivering its promises, as disclosed by its members. It was around this point that Billy perfected his idea of organizing the Fyre Festival.
Fyre Festival Debacle
The luxury festival which was managed by Fyre Media (a business venture Billy established in the year 2016) was meant to hold at the end of April and May 2017 in the Bahamas while tickets were sold for $1,200. Partygoers were assured they would fly in on a custom Boeing 737 from Miami and that they would be treated to gourmet food as well as exotic tents to sleep in.
Fyre Festival also won the attention of many influential supermodels such as Hailey Baldwin, Bella Hadid, Emily Ratajkowski, and Alessandra Ambrosio who participated in filming promotional trailers for the event. On arriving on Great Exuma Island for the festival, attendees were greeted with a number of serious misrepresentation, administration, and management issues that eventually led to the cancellation of the event organized by Ja Rule and Billy McFarland.
Following the spectacular failure of the event which massively unfolded on Instastories and Twitter timelines, Fyre Festival instantly became the focus of multiple lawsuits and the United States federal investigations. Billy and Ja Rule were later sued for $100 million in May 2017 in a class-action lawsuit and Billy pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud in the month of March 2018.
McFarland agreed to forfeit over $26 million and was sentenced to six years in federal prison on October 11, 2018. The convicted fraudster is incarcerated at FCI Otisville, in Orange County, New York. In 2019, the controversy surrounding the failed Fyre Festival was recounted in the two documentaries (Fyre fraud, released by Hulu on January 14) and Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (released by Netflix on 18th January 2019).
Billy McFarland the son of American parents, established his first business at the age of thirteen. Unlike the disgraced fraudster, not much is known about his parents. However, authoritative sources reported that Billy’s parents are both real estate developers. Apart from this information, their family background and where they reside are still a mystery.
As revealed by the Hulu documentary, Billy McFarland is in a relationship with a beautiful model named Anastasia Eremenko. Born in 1990, the model is a native of Rostov-on-Don, a town in southeastern Russia.
Anastasia moved to Delaware at the age of seventeen and later obtained an M.B.A. from Goldey-Beacom College. She launched her modelling career in the year 2012 and has since worked with several brands, including Balmain and Guess. Currently, Eremenko is with Silent Models.
The couple is said to have met after the Fyre Festival fraud came to the light. Though McFarland is in jail, he is still in love with his girlfriend
Is Billy Related to Seth MacFarlane?
Seth MacFarlane is best known for being the creator of the television series, The Family Guy. Though online audience are convinced that the convicted felon and the actor share some resemblance in some way, Seth does not, in any way, have familial relation to Billy.
Apart from the fact that there is no possibility the two could be brothers, Seth knows nothing about Fyre Festival, his parents are not real estate developers and his last name is MacFarlane.