• A resident of Shelter Island has filed a lawsuit against the town for allowing Beyonce to shoot a video at a historical site without a permit
  • Mike Gaynor claims that the singer did not have permission to shoot a video at Sylvester Manor
  • Gaynor believes that the town did it to earn money

A Shelter Island, N.Y., resident has filed a lawsuit against the council of the town for allegedly allowing Beyonce to shoot a video at a local historical site without a permit.

According to the court papers obtained by Page Six, Mike Gaynor, a Shelter Island resident, has claimed that the musician did not have permission to shoot her visual album “Black Is King” at the historical site called Sylvester Manor. The property previously belonged to Nathaniel Sylvester, an infamous slave owner.

The suit was filed against the town, the Community Preservation Fund board’s member, and all the trustees of the town.

While speaking with the media outlet, Gaynor said the place demands a lot of respect because numerous slaves were buried there. He called the manor a “sacred ground” and said it’s not a place where people can film a dance video.

“I have official confirmation from the town clerk that no permits were obtained. I was deeply offended when I learned that The Manor took money from Disney to allow the film on what is without argument on wholly sacred ground. Please know that there are at least 200+ enslaved Africans and Manhasset Indians buried on their land and so that’s just not a place where you film a dance-off,” Page Six quoted Gaynor, as saying.

Gaynor also claimed that the town allowed the “Lemonade” hitmaker to shoot a music video to gain “money.”

“There’s no way they would have allowed her to turn up without knowing — I believe in fact the town did know about this and the town was signed up on an NDA so that the Manor and the town could make money,” Gaynor said.

According to the outlet, the manor staff helped Beyonce choose the locations and confirmed in August that the Grammy-winning artist decided to shoot the video at the manor due to its history.

Black Is King” is a musical film and visual album helmed, produced, and written by Beyonce. It the story of a young African prince (Folajomi Akinmurele) who is exiled from his kingdom after the death of his father.

The album was inspired by Disney’s iconic movie “The Lion King.”

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Beyonce is pictured at a 2019 screening of "The Lion King." AFP / Robyn Beck