Just days after social media influencer Olivia Jade Gianulli was caught in the center of a scandal in which her mother, Hollywood actress Lori Loughlin, allegedly paid $500,000 in bribes to get her and her sister into the University of Southern California, as The Inquisitr reported, the 19-year-old finds herself at the center of a whole new cheating scandal, this one involving an online TV game show.
Britain’s Daily Mail reported on Friday that three years ago, Gianulli, who goes by the name Olivia Jade online, appeared on a trivia quiz show filmed for an online Verizon channel. On the show, she competed against two other social media influencers. But when another contestant won, executives demanded that the ending be filmed again, with Jade winning this time.
The show, titled Tap That Awesome App, was produced by the online channel Awesomeness TV and came with a first place prize of $5,000, which would be donated to charity in the name the contestant who answered the most pop culture quiz questions correctly.
But when Instagram star Marissa Rachel nailed the quiz, taking first place — with a live studio audience and full production crew looking on — that’s when two “studio executives” stepped in, according to a source who spoke to The Daily Mail.
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...and who am I? That’s one secret I’ll never tell. You know you love me. Xoxo, Gossip Girl???? Also, comment ⬇️ a secret about you know one else knows ???? Promise, I won’t tell. (Mine is that I’m obsessed with pickles and drinking pickle juice and sometimes I’d drink it out of the jar with a straw ????????????????♀️)
“We have to film it again with Olivia as the winner,” the Daily Mail source quoted the executives saying. “Everyone was confused. Marissa Rachel said, ‘But I already won.'”
Rachel confirmed the account of the bizarre contest-rigging incident.
“I have nothing against Olivia. I’ve met her on several occasions and she’s perfectly nice,” she said, according to Cosmopolitan. “But what happened just didn’t seem right to me. I definitely won by a significant amount.”
During the reshoot, Rachel was instructed to give an incorrect answer to a question she had already answered correctly, while her previous correct answers were left on the cutting room floor, according to the Daily Mail account. Rachel said that she was never given an explanation for why the show was rigged to install Jade as the winner and to strip her of the $5,000 prize, which she planned to donate to the American Red Cross.
The Daily Mail said that its reporters sought comments from AwesomenessTV, as well as from representatives for Jade and her mother, Loughlin, but never received any responses.
Loughlin appeared in court in Los Angeles on Tuesday where she was released on a $1 million bond, as The Inquisitr reported. At the time of her mother’s arrest, Jade Gianulli was enjoying spring break vacation on a $100 million yacht owned by billionaire real estate developer Rick Caruso — who is also chair of the USC Board of Trustees.