Laura Osnes has filed suit against The New York Post for defamation. The Two-time Tony nominee claims that The Post's report (through subsidiary Page Six) of Osnes being fired from a one-night-only concert over her refusal to be vaccinated for COVID-19 was false, according to an article in Forbes.
The Cinderella and Bonnie & Clyde star is reportedly seeking $5 million in damages, claiming the newspaper's "libelous conduct has caused, and continues to cause, [her] disgrace and humiliation, harm to her professional and personal reputation, mental anguish and emotional distress."
Osnes had been announced to appear in a one-night-only concert in East Hampton, New York in August, 2021, singing selections from a planned Broadway revival of Crazy For You. The Post later reported that Osnes had been fired from the event for refusing to vaccinate against COVID-19, with Osnes fighting back against the claims later on social media.
Writing in an Instagram post that has since been deleted, Osnes shared, "In early May, I accepted an invitation to perform in a one-night benefit concert at East Hampton's Guild Hall. A month ago, I was informed that protocols had changed, and I would now need proof of vaccination to participate. I was disappointed but responded that I would have to withdraw, as I have not yet gotten the vaccine. It is also important to clarify that none of my fellow performers ever 'pressed me on the matter' before I withdrew. It was a drama-free and discrete transition. ... I would have tested in a heartbeat—something I have been doing for months, and will continue to do, in order to keep working safely."
She went on to share that "it is a legal right of all Americans to have their medical privacy protected. Mine has now been broadcast with an attitude of shame and demonization. Secondly, I believe individuals have the right to do the research, consult a doctor, and come to their own conclusions before deciding whether or not to get any injection. My case is personal. I stand by the decision my husband and I, with input from our physician, have made for ourselves, our family planning, and our future."
In the months since that concert, Osnes was dropped from the line-up for a Disney Princess Tour and planned London concerts of Bonnie & Clyde that would have reunited Osnes with her original Broadway co-star, Jeremy Jordan. She is currently preparing to appear in Shiners at Woolworth Theatre in Nashville, which will reportedly combine elements of Broadway musicals, comedy, and circus-style acrobatics. The production is scheduled to begin September 23.