SeaWorld Entertainment will fork over $65 million to settle a lawsuit accusing it of misleading investors about how big a bite the “Blackfish” documentary would take out of its business. The deal scuttles a trial set for this month over the 2014 class-action lawsuit, which accused the aquatic theme park operator of duping shareholders about business woes that followed the 2013 film accusing SeaWorld of abusing its signature orca whales by keeping them in captivity.
The Orlando, Florida-based company has made a deal to settle the case without admitting any “fault, liability, or wrongdoing,” SeaWorld said in a Tuesday regulatory filing. The company said it will fund the settlement with about $45.5 million in insurance proceeds and about $19.5 million in cash.
SeaWorld has also settled a separate shareholder derivative lawsuit making similar allegations that it failed to tell investors about the effects of “Blackfish,” according to the Securities and Exchange Commission filing. SeaWorld will make “certain corporate governance modifications” as a result of the deal, the filing says.