Women sue Netflix over ‘Our Father’ documentary revealing their secret

INDIANAPOLIS (WXIN) – Two women among nearly 100 children fathered without consent by a former Indianapolis fertility doctor are suing the makers of the Netflix documentary “Our Father.” They say the film revealed their secrets to millions of viewers without their consent.

According to the indictment, the unidentified plaintiffs are two of many secret children fathered by Donald Cline, the former fertility doctor who used his own sperm to impregnate Indiana women while lying to them about the donor’s source. Cline’s lies, uncovered by a WXIN investigation, became more widely known after the release of “Our Father” on Netflix on May 11.

The complaint alleges that neither the plaintiffs nor their families knew they were secret children of Cline until they did DNA testing at home in 2019. real origin.

According to the indictment, the creators of “Our Father” contacted several children to ask whether they would like to be filmed in front of the camera or submit photos of themselves. The complaint states that a producer made it clear that none of the secret children in the documentary would be identified without their express consent.

The complaint alleges that the producer wrote a message that read, in part, “I know some of you were more comfortable than others being involved (in the documentary) … you won’t be identified (unless you have already given us explicit permission to do this) so.”

Despite this promise, the complaint states that both plaintiffs were shown in the documentary during a scene that showed photos depicting the secret children and listed their names while saying they were a “match”. The complaint went on to say that several other secret children had their photos and names blurred, but this protection was not given to the plaintiffs.

The complaint alleges that both Netflix and Blumhouse Productions are guilty of breaking their promise and identifying the plaintiffs, despite not having given permission. The disclosure caused “serious damage” to the plaintiffs, the complaint says, including, but not limited to, “reputational damage, distress, shame and emotional trauma.”

Clips from the scene identifying the plaintiffs were also used on social media accounts, the indictment said, further revealing their identities to hundreds of thousands.

Both women demand financial compensation in the form of damages.

You can read the complaints below.

WXIN has reached out to Netflix and the filmmakers for comment.

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