Pro Surfer Files Suit Claiming She Was Labeled as Working in Gay Porn

May 1, 2015 12:51 PM PST

HONOLULU — A professional surfer who was denied a role in the 2011 drama "Soul Surfer" claims that producers of the faith-based biopic passed her over because they believed she had a history of starring in gay porn.

Keala Kennelly, who is ranked as the second-greatest female surfer in the world and has worked on numerous mainstream film productions, sued Brookwell McNamara Entertainment Inc. this week for religion discrimination based on sexual orientation and sexual orientation discrimination after a female producer allegedly told the director of the film that she "had some dirt on" her.

"'For one thing, she is gay,'" Kennelly's complaint said, quoting the producer. "'And she does gay porn. It's on the Internet.'"

According to the complaint, the male director, without checking the accuracy of the producer's “dirt,” responded, "'No way! Oh no. Well, we can't use her then.'"

The lawsuit claims that Kennelly admits she is openly gay but never performed in porn.

A simple Internet check does show that Kennelly has a presence on, which categorically offers listings of those working in the adult entertainment business.

But FreeOnes, which describes itself as “the ultimate babe site since 1998,” also includes others outside of adult.

In the case of Kennelly, FreeOnes includes five links, but they all resolve to social network sites on Twitter and Facebook, as well as her fan site and a mainstream movie database.

Kennelly, who claimed she lost her Screen Actors Guild health coverage because the production company passed her over for the role and others, filed her case in Hawaii's First Circuit Court.

The Kauai resident seeks compensatory, special and punitive damages.

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