Thursday, September 2, 2010
Brennan, a local actress and model, unwittingly provided encouragement and inspiration to area kook Thomas Franklin through her appearance in a Humane Society ad in the Chicago Sun Times last fall. The ad asked the reader, and was directed personally at him according to Franklin, to “Make a Difference!”
Franklin vowed to follow Brennan’s call to action and felt emboldened to write over 30 songs focused on her and the inspiring example she sets for animal advocacy. Brennan immediately filed suit, fearing that being in some way tied to Franklin’s insane creations might impugn her character, destroy her public persona, and ruin a promising career.
Brennan denied claims that she looked straight into the eyes of Franklin from the half page ad in the Entertainment section and said she had no personal message for him. Franklin countered in his testimony that he and his beautiful muse are connected on a spiritual level and thus the spark she provides is irrevocable.
“We are intimately involved,” Franklin told the court, “. . . like through our brainwaves, man!”
Brennan also denied she whispers words of encouragement in Franklin’s ears while he sleeps and rejected his account that she is mouthing “I am fated to be yours” in each subsequent weekend ad run.
“I was flattered for the first delivery of what would become a total of 18 dozen roses, but then I felt like it was getting out of control,” admitted Brennen, who has since moved back in with her parents John and Eva Brennan of Evanston out of concern for her privacy and safety.
“She puts thoughts in my head and drives me to create!” Franklin interupted more than once.
He also argued that her inspiration is a part of the public domain and is available to anyone. “. . .and for any reason,” he added while giving a knowing nod and a wink to the circuit court bailiff, which drew cringes and looks of disgust from Brennan and the other women in the courtroom.
Franklin was unconvinced by argument, saying that she is merely playing coy and prefers a low profile, allowing him to claim the spotlight.
“She’s just hiding how proud she is for breathing life into the play I wrote entitled The Passion of the Michelle.”
Brennan is also asking for the removal of Franklin’s most recently crafted masterpiece currently displayed just behind the treeline in Millennium Park. The piece of “art” was unveiled this weekend to an audience of uninterested park-goers and park security who gave him a citation for not having a permit. Witnesses reported that Franklin revealed an 18 ft chicken wire and Play-Doh sculpture of Michelle Brennan holding both a Cocker Spaniel and a miniature version of himself in her lap; all encircled by a ring of a 3ft tall dancing anthropomorphized dog bone chewie toys.
“If that’s not malicious libel, I don’t know what is,” Brennan’s lawyer said. “I beg the court to end the defamation of this young lady’s reputation.”
Franklin ended his version of events with an appeal to the court’s sense of appreciation for artistic inspiration.
“She has given me the freedom and motivation to accomplish anything I want,” he said.
Anything, that is, except stand within a 500 foot proximity of Ms Brennan according to the restraining order then issued by the court.