A Katy bar owner is blaming Hollywood for delays in making repairs to his business.
He tells KHOU that Paramount’s popular make-over TV show, “Bar Rescue,” promised to help him renovate his bar, but then suddenly pulled the plug. Justin Whitfield says he halted doing work on the business for weeks, under the impression that the production crew would do it in an episode.
The bar, “The Wildcatter Saloon” in Katym, was flooded after Harvey. Whitfield and his wife had used their life savings to buy the bar, just a few months before the storm.
“We had no flood insurance or anything. We lost our home, our business, our travel trailer,” Whitfield claims.
He says he was over-joyed when “Bar Rescue”offered to help him rebuild everything.
“They tell me, point blank, “Don’t. Stop Working on your house and your business, so I stopped,” he added.
Whitfield says a production crew came to the Saloon, set up a work tent, and even filmed one of his employee, Travis Daniel, at Daniel’s home, which was destroyed by the hurricane.
Daniel explains that he became emotional on camera, while looking at his home’s damage. The emotion was captured in footage that never aired.
“To be honest, I was a little embarrassed. I pulled everything out from my heart, how I felt about it, shared with what I thought was the world the struggles that everyone here in Houston has been going through,” said Daniel.
The guys say just days before Christmas, the show pulled the plug on the episode, before helping to fix anything. The men stated that waiting for the show’s help delayed renovations for weeks.
Whitfield is still bitter and is now posting what happened on Facebook.
“The way they did it was just wrong, leave us hanging like that,” he said.
But the show’s production company says it had told them their reason at the time, and had apologized for circumstances out of their control.
In a statement to us, the company’s PR firm, 3 Ball Entertainment, said in part: “Our host, Jon Taffer, fell ill with pneumonia and we were unable to proceed with filming. Due to the show’s production schedule…..we would not have been able to return to Houston for six months at the earliest.”
Whitfield was featured on an earlier episode of the show, when he owned a different bar. He says it was a good experience and popular episode.