The producer of cinematographer John Bailey’s most recent film — the 2017 Pantelion comedy “How to Be a Latin Lover” — told TheWrap that “certainly on one on our movie” has accused the Motion Picture Academy president of misconduct.
On Friday, Variety reported that the Academy had launched an investigation into Bailey after receiving three accusations of sexual harassment earlier in the week.
“He’s the most professional outstanding person, he was great to work with, no sense of anything that would lead to these accusations,” producer Ben Odell told TheWrap, adding, “If it’s true then those who have acted poorly need to be punished for it.”
Though the specifics of the accusations have not been disclosed, Odell said he found Bailey’s work on “How to Be a Latin Lover” to be completely professional. “He’s an older man so when he’s on a movie set he’s just focused on doing his job,” Odell said. “He barely communicates outside his team of people. He’s just incredibly focused. He’s a lovely human being. This doesn’t gibe with any experience I’ve had with him.”
Odell also expressed disappointment that the investigation leaked so early in the process. “It would be great if they did this investigation before these things started coming out in the press because it really destroys lives,” he said. “When did we become guilty before proven innocent? Only in Hollywood. ”
If suspended or removed over the investigation, Bailey would be replaced by Academy first vice president and makeup artist Lois Burwell.
A subcommittee of the Academy board led by casting director David Rubin is heading up the investigation, according to Variety. But the exact nature of the accusations is not yet known.
Bailey, a veteran cinematographer who last August became the first below-the-line Hollywood veteran elected to lead the organization that runs the Oscars, has not commented on the matter. And the Academy issued a statement that it “treats any complaints confidentially to protect all parties.”