The story is as old as time. Boy Meets Girl. Boy Falls In Love ….

No, it’s the other story … Business needs investment capital. A smooth operator (smooth criminal?) … the well dressed man steps up, and offers the world. What could possibly go wrong?

The Answer? Apparently, a lot.

Understand: The issues discussed here have little to do with the viability of the Tidewater Landing (Soccer Stadium) Project. That is not in dispute. When surveyed, most investment professionals, including those called to vote upon it as Members of the Commerce RI Board, presented with a Stadium Project separated from the original corresponding mixed used development, do not believe the project will be viable.

What is being called into question is the ability of CommerceRI, and their vendors, to execute fundamental due diligence regarding the background, and claims of the Johnson Brothers, the Developers of arguably the largest private public partnership in Rhode Island history.

Enter CSL International, a consulting firm hired by CommerceRI, ostensibly to provide investment analysis & oversite. According to a report issued, by CSL on July 14, 2022: (The entire report is available at the bottom of this article)



For purposes of this conversation, perhaps the most critical aspect of their analysis was the Report? Due Diligence? On the background of Fortuitous Partners Brett & Grant Johnson. Curiously absent? Conversation surrounding the “experiences” of Partner/Twin Grant Johnson. Described by one wag as the “Billy Carter” of the Brothers Johnson, the  Brother of Brett Johnson, and co founder of Fortuitous predecessor Benevolent Partners, his participation in the management of investments BurnLodge & Mack Film Development, could kindly be considered as disastrous. Yet consider the analysis performed upon the Developers. From the CSL Consulting Report: (Reprinted in its entirety on the final page)




So what happened at Mack Film Development?

The facts of the case are not in dispute. (See Court Filing Below)

In 2003, Benevolent promises nearly 5 Million Dollars in working capital to Robert Cort Productions & Mack Film Development et al. In fact, Benevolent had less than 1 Million Dollars to invest, a shortfull of nearly 4 million dollars. Benevolent fails to provide working capital, placing Robert Corp Productions (RCP) & Mack/Millie Film  into deep distress, unable to fulfill commitments to its film partners. Mack et al sues. RCP/Mack Millie wins case in jury trial. Decision is upheld in appeals.

Per The Court:

Facts Of The Case

Mack Film Development, LLC v. Johnson-part-1


Mack Film Development, LLC v. Johnson-part-2


Mack Film Development, LLC v. Johnson-part-3


Is there a pattern here? In both the case of BurnLounge, and Mack Films, there is an almost intentional, studied willful ignorance by CommerceRI Executives of the litany of failures that follow the Brothers Johnson. Witness this conversation, with CommerceRI Vice Chair Liz Catucci, just the day before the publication of this article, and 2 weeks? after the Coalition submitted the BurnLounge article to CommerceRI for review:



Should Governor McKee, Chairman of RICommerce, Vice Chair Catucci, Executive Director Tanner be aware of the past performance, well documented in these pages, of Benevolent, Fortuitous & The Brothers Johnson? What. Say. You?

And of course, there’s more: Stay tuned for Part 2! (And take a few moments to visit our supporting cast o’ documents! Just keep scrolling down!)


Mack Film Development, LLC v. Johnson


trellis_docket_cpf08508974 Mack Film v Benevolent

Additional Documents



Editorial Note: The business & management relationships of the Brothers Johnson, to the respective investment vehicles, Fortuitous & Benevolent, are rather … errrr, fluid. The information presented below attempts to, as accurately as possible, provide some sense of “organization”? Because of the ability to manipulate websites, and information portals, the pictures below are all screen shots, taken May 10, 2023.

Got Companies?

A Smattering of the Corporate Buffet Offered By The Brothers Johnson. Interlocking Directorships Anyone? (From The California Secretary of State)

Despite Claims To The Contrary: Grant Johnson Appears To Be An Active Part of Benevolent Partners




Benevolent Website Listing Brett Johnson As Sole Operator



Grant Johnson LinkedIn Profile




Benevolent Capital Identifying Fortuitous Partners As A Portfolio Investment

A Rather Lonely Looking Grant Johnson, Alone Again, Naturally – On The Benevolent Website

Previous Story: BurnLounge-A Tale Of Fraud! By The Folks Who Brought You Tidewater Landing! Gov McKee, Are You Concerned With CommerceRI Due Diligence? #PyramidScheme

One Comment

  1. Incredible, excellent article Pat! You are talented.

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