Republican presidential candidate Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTrump blasts Clinton's 'politics of fear, futility, and incompetence' Clinton supporters blast Trump for lack of plan on trade Nigel Farage: Trump better for UK than Obama MORE allegedly paid actors to celebrate his formal campaign launch for president earlier this week.
The new 2016 contender paid extras $50 to participate in his kickoff Tuesday from New York City’s Trump Tower, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The publication said it had obtained an email sent by New York-based Extra Mile Casting last Friday, calling on performers capable of joining the campaign launch earlier this week.
“We are looking to cast people for the event to wear T-shirts and carry signs and help cheer him in support of his announcement,” the June 12 email said.
“We understand this is not a traditional ‘background job,’ but we believe acting comes in all forms and that is inclusive of this school of thought,” it added.
The Hollywood Reporter said the email was sent on behalf of Gotham Government Relations and Communications, a political consulting group in New York that Trump has previously used.
The firm had no comment on possible help for his campaign launch, the publication said.
Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski denied his staff had hired any actors on Wednesday evening.
“Mr. Trump draws record crowds at almost every venue at which he is a featured speaker,” Lewandowski said, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“The crowds are large, often record-setting and enthusiastic, often with standing ovations,” he added. “Mr. Trump’s message is, ‘make America great again.’ ”
Extra Mile Casting also dismissed claims it was involved in the campaign launch, The Hollywood Reporter said.
“We don’t know anything about that,” the talent agency said.
The company refused comment on whether that response was a denial of The Hollywood Reporter story.
The Hollywood Reporter said it was alerted to Extra Mile’s possible email by Angelo Carusone, an anti-Trump activist.
Carusone, it said, recognized a background actor on Instagram posing in the event.
He then screengrabbed a photo of that man, since identified as performer Domenico Del Giacco.
It shows him posing with actress Courtney Kloz, with the pair both wearing Trump campaign shirts and holding supportive signs.
Trump had teased seeking the White House in 2012 before ruling out a campaign.
He launched his 2016 bid Tuesday on a platform of aggressive jobs creation and securing America’s southern border.
“Our country needs a truly great leader, and we need a truly great leader now,” Trump said that morning. “We need somebody who can take the brand of the United States and make it great again.”
“I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created, I tell you that,” he added.
- Updated at 7:09 p.m.