< Supergirl’s Katie McGrath...
It’s been just two months since The New York Times broke the story of Harvey Weinstein, and his rampant harassment, assault, and consequent financial hush-ups of numerous high profile women in Hollywood, as well as employees. Since that time, countless individuals have publicly come forward describing their own disturbing experiences not just involving Weinstein, but other big shots in Hollywood.
Although most of us had suspicions already, it has certainly been confirmed that Hollywood has a seriously vile harassment and assault problem . As the #MeToo movement continues to make waves across North America and further, we seem to learn each day about yet another seriously high profile star who has been accused – often on numerous occasions – of assault and harassment.
At this point, we merely shake our heads with disappointment and anger when we hear about the next big shot who has been accused of assault or harassment. Although allegations and rumours have circled around several of these stars for many years now, the #MeToo movement has brought strength to the victims, and seems to finally be changing the discourse surrounding the topic of assault and harassment.
If you can’t keep up with who’s been accused so far in Hollywood, read on for 22 Top Stars Accused Of Harassment And Assault.
22. KEVIN SPACEY
As the star of critically acclaimed shows and films like House of Cards and American Beauty, we’ve seen Kevin Spacey act as a creep several times. In real life, however, allegations of his misconduct have only become public in the last few months. When actor Anthony Rapp came forward in October with his disturbing encounter with Spacey when Rapp was just 14 (and Spacey was 26), many ex-fans were disheartened and disgusted to learn about Spacey’s non-consensual actions towards Rapp.
Following this revelation, a number of House of Cards employees came forward with a general statement, describing how Spacey made the production environment an uncomfortable one, and how his actions often seemed predatory— and aimed at younger men.
Spacey publicly apologized on his Twitter about Rapp’s accusations, and in the same breath officially came out as gay. He has been heavily criticized for seeming to deflect away from the point— which is that he assaulted a minor. In response to these allegations, Spacey was dropped from House of Cards.
21. LOUIS C.K.
A few weeks after the initial New York Times story, the Times broke yet another shocking story about one of Hollywood’s biggest stars— this time, a comedian: Louis C.K.
Indeed, five women came forward to investigative journalists from the Times, recounting their disturbing experiences with Louis C.K. Most often, the experiences involved Louis C.K. touching himself in front of these women without their consent.
The Louis C.K. story has brought about a whole other level of disturbing, as ex-fans of the comedian look back on his stand up acts, remembering some of his very graphic stories about similar occurrences. Because it’s stand up comedy, we assumed exaggeration. And yet we also find ourselves looking back on the discourse and humor we may have condoned, and even encouraged, that should perhaps have been questioned earlier.
Louis C.K. has since come forward, admitting that the stories are true. In the wake of the story, the release of his film, I Love You, Daddy, has been canceled.
20. BEN AFFLECK
In response to the horrifying revelations about Harvey Weinstein, Ben Affleck published a statement on his Twitter, condemning Weinstein, and stating the things people can do to change the current and seemingly accepted behaviour: “support those who come forward, condemn this type of behavior when we see it and help ensure there are more women in positions of power.”
Hi statement caused a rather tumultuous response. First off, he was immediately reminded of his encounter with One Tree Hill star Hilarie Burton on MTV’s TRL when he was 31 (and she was 21), when he grabbed her breast on live television.
Secondly, numerous people raised the hypocrisy of his stating that people need to condemn this type of behavior when they see it, when he has been accused before of non-consensual touching, was close with Harvey Weinstein for many years, and remains close with his brother Casey Affleck (who has been accused on multiple occasions of similar assault).
19. CASEY AFFLECK
[UPDATED: an early version of this article incorrectly stated that Affleck had been sued for assault, rather than harassment. ]
Speaking of Casey Affleck, with the #MeToo movement continuing to gain momentum in Hollywood, allegations regarding Casey Affleck’s history of harassment have resurfaced.
Indeed, in 2010, the younger Affleck brother was facing two lawsuits for harassing producer Amanda White and cinematographer Magdalena Górka of the 2010 mockumentary I’m Still Here , which was directed by Affleck.
Since the Academy ousted Harvey Weinstein from its ranks, many are asking the organization to take on a similar stance with regards to Affleck. Although nothing was done last year, a petition by filmmaker Cameron Bossert that has gained 19,545 signatures so far is demanding that the Academy does not allow Affleck to present the 2018 Best Actress Oscar, as tradition would typically have him do.
18. NICK CARTER
Former Backstreet Boy Nick Carter has now joined the scores of former high-profile celebrities who are now being outed many years later for behavior that will hopefully no longer be condoned.
Former singer Melissa Schuman came forward mid-November with a disturbing experience she had with Nick Carter when she was just 18 years old— Carter was 22.
Schuman describes being raped by Carter. Shortly after this traumatizing experience, she sang a duet with him, but claims that soon thereafter “quickly lost interest in pursuing a career as a recording artist” as a result of the incident.
Carter has denied the allegations, claiming that he had believed that everything they had done together was consensual.
Schuman has since posted on Twitter with a message of gratitude for the support she has received from fans and fellow celebrities for sharing her story..
17. JEFFREY TAMBOR
In early November, Jeffrey Tambor was added to the list of Hollywood’s alleged harassers. Women who have come forward with their own stories pertaining to Tambor’s sexual misconduct include his former assistant, Van Barnes, Transparent co-star Trace Lysette, and makeup artist Tamara Delbridge.
Jeffrey Tambor previously starred in the successful comedy-drama television series Transparent , but has since left the show as a result of the allegations. Tambor has apologized for any behavior that may have been interpreted as sexually aggressive, but has stated that he never deliberately meant to harass anyone, and has claimed that the show’s atmosphere has become “politicized.”
At the end of the day, Tambor was acting inappropriately in a workplace environment, and his actions, such as kissing people on the lips out of nowhere and without their consent, caused people discomfort.
16. ED WESTWICK
Ed Westwick, star of Gossip Girl, has now been accused at least four times of assault or harassment.
For two of the four women, their experience was quite similar. They were invited to Westwick’s house, hung out with him and other people, drank, and smoked marijuana, and proceeded to sleep in the spare room. Soon thereafter, they found him in the spare room, forcing himself on them.
On another occasion, Westwick slapped a woman’s backside at a festival in Los Angeles, and groped another woman at a hotel.
Westwick has denied allegations, claiming he doesn’t even know some of these women. In response to these disturbing allegations (and now lawsuits), BBC has suspended the release of the television series Ordeal by Innocence that Westwick was intended to star in.
15. DUSTIN HOFFMAN
Actor Dustin Hoffman was first accused of harassment in 1979, by Meryl Streep, in an interview with Time magazine. Streep says Hoffman groped her breast. She has stated over the years that Hoffman was also quite verbally abusive during the filming of
Kramer vs. Kramer.
Now, in 2017, we have heard of two separate occasions of Hoffman’s harassment. Writer Anna Graham Hunter says that Hoffman groped her and talked about sex when she was just 17 years old and an intern for his film Death of a Salesman. Hunter has her diary to prove her story, quoting, “Today, when I was walking Dustin to his limo, he felt my a– four times. I hit him each time, hard, and told him he was a dirty old man.” Hoffman was 47.
Producer Wendy Riss Gatsiounis has also come forward in the last month, claiming that she has also been harassed by Hoffman.
14. JEREMY PIVEN
As of now, actresses Ariane Bellamar, Cassidy Freeman, and Anastasia Taneie have come forward with stories of Piven harassing and assaulting them, as well as advertising executive Tiffany Bacon Scourby.
Some of these stories involve Piven exposing himself to these women, rubbing up against them, and groping them without their consent.
As of now, Piven continues to deny the claims. His Entourage co-star, Kevin Dillon, has come forward in defense of Piven, claiming to TMZ that Piven is a victim of a “witch hunt.”
Being defended by the co-stars of Entourage — not exactly a female friendly show— doesn’t give Piven much backing. In response to allegations, CBS has decided to end Piven’s show,
Wisdom of the Crowd, after episode 13 without any plans for a second season.
13. ANDY DICK
Comedian and actor and Andy Dick has now been dropped from two separate films, Raising Buchanan and an unnamed indie film, as a result of an overwhelming number of harassment allegations made against him.
Several members of the industry, including actresses, actors, directors, producers, and writers, have come forward stating Dick has moved people to tears with his constant harassment. Harassment allegations have included forcibly kissing people, licking them, and making lewd comments and jokes.
For Dick, many are blaming his alcohol and drug for his behavior. Dick himself claims that a lot of this is just his sense of humor. But if it’s not consensual, in the workplace, and moving people to tears, we just don’t really see how that’s humor.
12. GEORGE TAKEI
George Takei, best known as Mr. Sulu from Star Trek , is yet another shocker on the list of high-profile male celebrities accused of harassment or assault in Hollywood.
In mid-November, former actor and male model Scott R. Brunton came forward to CNN , describing a disturbing experience he had with Takei in the 1980s. The incident involved Brunton being drugged by Takei, and Brunton waking up with Takei taking his clothes off and attempting to grope him. Brunton chose to come forward after he saw Takei criticizing Kevin Spacey for his actions.
Takei has fully denied the claims made against him in a long Twitter post. In response, Brunton has expressed his disappointment in the matter, wishing that Takei would have fully owned up to his actions from the past..
11. STEVEN SEAGAL
2017 is not the first time Steven Seagal has been accused of harassment or assault. In the early 1990s, Seagal was accused by three Warner Bros. employees of harassment, and four additional actresses came forward with similar stories.
In 2010, a former employee of Seagal filed a lawsuit against Seagal, claiming Segal had harassed her, trafficked women for sex, and wrongly terminating her. The court case was dismissed a few months later.
Now, in 2017, Portia de Rossi has added her voice to the #MeToo movement, voicing her own experience of harassment during an audition she had with Segal. De Rossi says that Segal stated it was important they have off-screen chemistry and went on to unzip his pants..
10. SYLVESTER STALLONE
November also saw the publication in The Mail Online of a shocking police report from 1986, which outlines a young woman’s experience at the hand of actor Sylvester Stallone and his bodyguard.
At the time, the girl, Michelle Bega, was just 16 years old, and went to the police after being intimated into having sex with both men. After it was over, the report mentions that Stallone had said that both himself and his bodyguard were married, and that if she ever told anyone about the incident, they would beat her up.
Following this, she went to the police and reported her experience.
The police report was released in Mail Online just this November in the wake of the #MeToo movement, but it was previously published in the Baltimore Post-Examiner in February.
It should be noted, however, that Mail Online does not maintain much credibility when it comes to quality journalism.
9. WOODY ALLEN
Woody Allen has long been associated with stories of assault and harassment. A few years back, the daughter of Mia Farrow, Allen’s former girlfriend, came forward claiming Allen had assaulted her when she was seven years old. Mia Farrow and Dylan Farrow’s brother, Ronan Farrow (who wrote one of the biggest stories pertaining to the Harvey Weinstein scandal in The New Yorker ), have backed the story. Although the investigation was done at the time that the claims were made, nothing ever came from it.
Now, when Allen was asked to comment on the Harvey Weinstein scandal, Allen stated that he was sad for everyone involved in the situation— but also claimed that he hoped this proliferation of accusations would not turn into a “witch hunt.”
8. CHARLIE ROSE
As one of the most recent additions to the ever-growing list of celebrities charged with assault or harassment allegations, talk show host and journalist Charlie Rose was accused on November 20 for harassing eight women he worked with, for things such as non-consensually groping them and phoning them for sexual purposes.
As saddened and angry as we are to find out some of our former favorite stars are creeps and predators, it’s encouraging at the same time to find that the discourse and commonly accepted norms might actually be changing.
In response to the numerous allegations against Rose, networks like CBS and PBS canceled their contracts with him Rose, and two different universities took back the awards they had previously presented to him for his work in journalism and communications.
7. MARK SCHWAHN
Mark Schwahn rose to a certain amount of fame for writing and creating One Tree Hill. Sadly, fans were disheartened to hear in mid-November that Schwahn is yet another to be added to the list of accused Hollywoods heavyweights.
Several writers, crew members, and cast members who worked on the show with Schwahn came forward – starting on November 12 with one of the writers, Audrey Wauchope— with stories involving Schwahn continuously harassing these individuals.
Following Audrey Wauchope’s Twitter statement, One Tree Hill ’s main female stars – Sophia Bush, Hilarie Burton, and Bethany Joy Lenz – came forward stating that Schwahn had been manipulative on set, and that they stood behind Wauchope’s claims.
While Mark Schwahn has not yet been fired for his executive role in the production of The Royals, he is on suspension.
6. ANDREW KREISBERG
Although Andrew Kreisberg is not necessarily a household name, the writer and producer has risen to prominence in recent years for being a creator for well0known television shows like Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow.
In early November, however, Kreisberg was fired by Warner Bros. Television Group from his jobs as one of the showrunners for
Legends of Tomorrow, The Flash, and Supergirl because of the shocking number of people— 15 women and 4 men— who came forward accusing Kreisberg of harassment and misconduct
The star of Supergirl , Melissa Benoist, shared on Twitter a few days later a statement about how people in power should be held as accountable for the crimes they commit as those who wield less power.
As of now, Kreisberg continues to deny allegations.
5. JOHN LASSETER
John Lasseter is known for directing Disney and Pixar classics like
Toy Story , A Bug’s Life, and Cars. He is also now known as yet another Hollywood executive who was accused of acting inappropriately in the work place towards female colleagues.
According to several female colleagues who chose to remain anonymous in Vanity Fair , which broke the initial story about Lasseter, you could often find yourself alone with Lasseter or sitting beside him at a meeting, only to find minutes later his hand on your knee.
Lasseter is currently on a leave from Disney, and has apologized and acknowledged that he may have acted inappropriately in the past.
Although Lasseter’s actions are certainly not have the disturbing calibre of characters like Weinstein or Toback, the ongoing Hollywood harassment scandal draws a few key points: touching someone non-consensually is not okay, and doing so in a work environment is worse.
4. ROMAN POLANSKI
It’s hard to believe that someone who has had so much success as a director, and who has won three academy awards, was also arrested and convicted of drugging and raping a 13-year old in 1977.
After serving only 42 days, Polanski fled to France and has remained there for most of his life. Hollywood executives and the media mostly sided with Polanski at the time, and the victim, Samantha Gailey (Samantha Geimer, now) was largely shamed and not believed. The court case itself was deemed corrupt, which is part of the reason it was dismissed.
Since 2010, new stories have come out. Charlotte Lewis says that Polanski forced himself on her when she was 16, an anonymous woman says she was victimized by Polanski when she was 16, Renate Langer says she was assaulted by Polanski when she was 15, Marianne Barnard says Polanski assaulted her when she was 10, and Mallory Millet says Polanski tried to assault her twice in 1970.
3. JAMES TOBACK
Producer and director James Toback has now been accused of over 200 women of having harassed or assaulted them.
Most of the stories involve Toback propositioning women in hotels, at festivals, at award ceremonies, and even on the street, showing off about the movies he had worked on, inviting them somewhere private— and sometimes not so private, like a park. Sometimes, the interaction would end with Toback speaking inappropriately to the women, but other times it would end in his removing his clothes, or getting the women to remove their clothes, and pressing himself against them.
Toback has also threatened women into silence over the years by reminding them of his powerful position in Hollywood. Actresses like Selma Blair and Rachel McAdams have since come forward.
2. BRETT RATNER
Director and producer Brett Ratner has now been accused on several counts of misconduct and harassment, including by journalist Danielle Berrin and actresses Ellen Page, Olivia Munn, Sarah Shahi, and Natasha Henstridge. He has also long been accused of making homophobic comments on numerous occasions, and is famous in Hollywood for his so-called Playboy personality. He has had romantic ties with Mariah Carey, Lindsay Lohan, and Paris Hilton in the past.
The number of assault and harassment allegations has resulted in Warner Bros. severing ties with Ratner, until the issue has been fully reviewed.
Like many individuals on this list, Ratner’s lawyer, on behalf of Ratner, has “categorically” denied all accusations since the story broke in early November in the Los Angeles Times.
1. HARVEY WEINSTEIN
And, finally, we have producer Harvey Weinstein, who has now been accused by countless women in the industry of having harassed and assaulted them. Allegations pertaining to Weinstein have led to what is now being called the “Weinstein Effect.”
The New York Times story that broke on October 5 has hopefully changed the tone in Hollywood. Where victims and accusers used to be shamed, blamed, and ignored, they are now being listened to. These predators are finally getting backlash for their continuous inappropriate, lecherous, or predatory behavior that has been accepted for far too long.
A surprisingly large number of production companies have dropped these powerful men from their films, TV shows, and various societies. Weinstein, for instance, was expelled from the Oscars. On the other hand, one of the most shameful men on this list, Roman Polanski, won an Oscar as recently as 2003, and Casey Affleck was awarded one this year.
We have a long way to go.
Did we miss yet another Hollywood big shot accused of harassment, misconduct, or assault? Let us know in the comments.