STX Entertainment, one of the few independent movie companies to launch in recent years, started with an unusual partnership between a blue-blood finance executive and a charismatic business ingénue from the British music scene, neither of whom had deep roots in Hollywood’s tricky landscape.
One of those partners, president Sophie Watts, suddenly exited this month amid a cloud of accusations that, according to multiple STX insiders, her CEO Robert Simonds was “obsessed” with his subordinate, attempted to control her movements and that the company failed to respond to her numerous complaints about his behavior.
No new president has been named to replace her, and Watts — who was billed as an STX co-founder in a company bio from 2016 — has been erased from the STX website and even on Wikipedia.
It’s a sudden and mysterious turn of events for a company that prided itself on seeking to shake up the way Hollywood does business.
After declining to respond to TheWrap despite numerous requests, STX issued this statement on Wednesday:
“We direct you — once again — to the joint STX-Sophie Watts press release issued on January 16, 2018 and Sophie’s internal personal memo to employees.”
The statement, which can be found below in full, did not address the specific question of Simonds’ relationship with Watts but it did stress that STX regularly reviews and updates “our internal policies and procedures to protect and nurture our people.”
A spokesman declined to say whether any internal measures had been taken in response to the reports of harassment, and again referred reporters to the company’s written policy.
Many things about the origins of STX are unusual: its investment from China and private equity fund TPG with a promise to spend $1 billion a year on content, its reliance on a network of close friends from Yale University, its ability to hire veteran Hollywood executives including former Universal chief Adam Fogelson, former Disney marketing head Oren Aviv and many others.
But nothing was more unusual than Simonds teaming up with the then-26-year-old Watts in 2012 to lead an entertainment company when her only experience was as a financier or executive producer on two 2011 documentaries, “Bully” and “Sarah Palin: You Betcha.”
From the start, many even inside STX remarked on the odd pairing. Simonds was a strait-laced, married, wealthy, middle-aged man with a finance background, taking as his partner a loud and proud lesbian 25 years his junior, whose friends were the likes of singer Ariana Grande and hipster DJ Samantha Ronson.
Watts had short, bleached blond hair, a British boarding school accent and an unmistakable personal style. “She’d wear the most expensive silk blouse but way too low cut, without a bra,” said one former employee. “She’s got that fashion model thing.”
Simonds, scion of a wealthy family from Arizona, had been a producer on broad comedies like Adam Sandler’s “Big Daddy” and “The Water Boy,” and Steve Martin’s family movie “Cheaper by the Dozen.” (On the STX website he is billed as an “accomplished businessman.”)
His closest friends at Yale, Bill McGlashan and now-Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, were also at the intersection of finance and entertainment. Watts came to Hollywood by way of London and the music business.
Her mother, Tessa, was an early member of Richard Branson’s team at Virgin Records and became a respected executive who helped to create legendary music videos like “Sledgehammer,” and to launch MTV in Europe. She died of cancer just months after STX was founded in March 2014.
Both McGlashan and Simonds found Watts unusually riveting as she spun a vision of creating a digital-age entertainment company making mid-budget movies at a time when Hollywood studios largely did not, the insider said. While Watts grew up in the fast lane of British pop music, that did not necessarily give her credibility in Hollywood. A longtime associate of Simonds’ said that his long-held “dream” was to run a studio making mid-budget movies with established stars, and that the concept for STX did not originate with Watts.
Regardless, Simonds was not deterred. He made Watts president and introduced her in public as a co-founder.
“She was focused and smart and could move him [Simonds] forward,” said another former employee. “She brought something to the table he didn’t have — a big personality and luster. Without her — we used to talk about it — [STX] was a bunch of old men. She was the only one who made it look forward-thinking.”
Still, optically the pairing was jarring to many, especially as the two were inseparable as co-executives — he the CEO, she the president — who shared an office and went everywhere together in style, including on private planes to China, where STX’s leading investors Tencent and Hony Capital were based.
In meetings, Simonds praised his young charge as an agent of change and a visionary executive to a point that made employees uncomfortable – particularly given her lack of experience.
“It became an unhealthy obsession of his,” said one of the former employees, using a term echoed by multiple people interviewed for this story. “It was common knowledge. “They had some kind of friendship that was peculiar to everybody, because it made no sense why she was being anointed the way she was.”
From left: Mila Kunis, Bob Simonds, Annie Mumolo, Kathryn Hahn and Sophie Watts attend the New York premiere of “Bad Moms” in 2016. (Photo: Getty Images)
Even as STX was rolling out its first theatrical releases, insiders say that Simonds and Watts maintained at best an arms-length role in the moviemaking process. (Watts didn’t present the studio’s slate at 2016’s high-profile CinemaCon presentation, but she did shmooze with “The Free State of Jones” star Matthew McConaughey at Mr. Chow atop the Caesar’s Palace afterward.)
“She was everybody’s boss. Technically we all reported to her. But we never talked to her. We didn’t intersect with her,” said one of the former employees. Movies were acquired and put into development, while Watts focused on other projects, such as tapping friends in the gay music community to start a short-lived digital platform.
Watts eventually hired former Yahoo marketing chief Kathy Savitt to run digital, thought she exited after just eight months, in May 2016.
Despite flops like “Free State of Jones,” the company scored its first big hit in summer 2016 with the comedy “Bad Moms” — which grossed $184 million worldwide on a modest $20 million budget — and also secured strategic investments from the Chinese technology giant Tencent and Hong Kong-based telecommunications firm PCCW.
In addition to its original capitalization, the company had access to about $700 million in new capital for a planned expansion and was worth roughly $1.5 billion.
But in the office, three former employees reported seeing heated exchanges between the two top executives. The relationship between Watts and Simonds began to visibly fray. Two insiders said that Watts was pushing back on Simonds’ unwelcome interest in her – such as asking to move to a separate office – and reported her displeasure to General Counsel Noah Fogelson, begging for protection.
“They’d be alternately lovey-dovey and hysterically angry at each other,” said one of the former employees. “It was a common sight to see Sophie in Noah Fogelson’s office broken apart in tears.”
Said another former employee: “I saw them fight a lot. I saw them clash.”
Said a third insider: “Watts called Noah Fogelson asking for help for years. We have glass walls and offices…. We heard her calls and their arguments and helped her when we could.”
On Wednesday, TheWrap received the following statement from STX regarding this report, and its initial report on Jan. 16:
We [STX] direct you–once again–to the joint STX-Sophie Watts press release issued on January 16, 2018 and Sophie’s internal personal memo to employees. Both of these communications clearly demonstrate STX’s gratitude to Sophie for her contributions to the company’s success and, in Sophie’s own words, her pride at building up STX and the reasons for her decision to leave the company. Unfortunately, the Wrap chose to disregard this unequivocal, on the record, joint statement in favor of its uncorroborated and contrary thesis, relying on unnamed sources.
STX is proud to have built a safe working environment that encourages employees to share their concerns. We have consistently taken all reports seriously regardless of the source, and we regularly review and update our internal policies and procedures to protect and nurture our people.
STX sent a statement announcing Watts’ departure 20 minutes after TheWrap published the initial report — and nearly 24 hours after it was contacted for comment.
As TheWrap previously reported, Watts complained repeatedly about the unwanted attention, and Simonds’ wife suspected a sexual relationship, calling the office to complain that the two were engaging in oral sex, according to two knowledgeable individuals.
In September 2016, an outside attorney was brought in who recommended that a bodyguard be present when the two were alone in the office, and that they not fly to Asia together without others present, one of the insiders said. STX attorney Bert Deixler said: “There was no bodyguard, there was no recommendation. That’s not true.”
By the fall of 2017, the conflict became more than Watts could handle. She ceased coming to the office, and in January her exit was attributed to her desire to start a new venture. When TheWrap reached Watts for the original report she merely stated, “I can’t comment on any of this.” Since then her cellphone has been out of service.
Even as Watts was withdrawing from STX, the company was moving forward on with its many media divisions, to varying degrees of success.
Last November’s “Bad Moms Christmas” grossed only $72 million domestically, and “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” — which STX distributed for EuropaCorp — was a costly flop. The studio has multiple movies on deck for 2018, including “Gringo” starring David Oyelowo in March and “Adrift’ starring Shailene Woodley and Amy Schumer’s “I Feel Pretty,” both in June.
The company’s TV division has been mostly quiet, producing Katherine Heigl’s short-lived NBC “State of Affairs” and lining up a few cable projects, including Matthew Carnahan’s ’90s tech-boom drama “Valley of the Boom” at NatGeo.
Also showing little traction are the company’s digital and VR ventures, including the VT company Surreal it acquired in 2016 on the strength of interactive content for YouTube stars and live events like the 2016 Emmy Awards. According to two individuals familiar with the operation, it’s mostly thought of as a value add for big-name talent looking to diversify the platforms on which fans receive them. (The division took meetings with Mark Wahlberg to entice him to sign on for the STX thriller “Mile 22,” one insider recalled.)
Despite the spotty track record, John Malone’s Liberty Global invested an undisclosed amount of money last November and placed an executive on STX’s board. And recent reports have suggested that STX may be close to an initial public offering on the Hong Kong Stock exchange.
How the departure of Sophie Watts may bear on all this remains to be seen, and the company’s reticence to shed light on the situation, along with her excision from its history, leaves more questions than answers.
“I think she believed that [with] a married straight guy, she could use his affections to get what she wanted,” said one of the former employees of Watts’ relationship with Simonds. “And at a certain point probably, whatever temptations she led him into, I’m sure it got out of control.”
Matt Donnelly contributed to this report.
79 Hollywood and Media Heavyweights Accused of Sexual Misconduct Since Harvey Weinstein
In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct scandal, women and men alike have been more vocal about speaking out against unwanted sexual advances and contact. The accusations have been many, and the reaction and fallout has been swift across the industry.
Six women have accused the director and producer of sexual misconduct, including Olivia Munn and Natasha Henstridge. Ratner’s lawyer says no woman has ever requested or received any financial settlement from Ratner.
Fallout: Ratner chose to personally step away from all Warner Bros. related activities, and Playboy put Ratner’s biopic about Hugh Hefner on hold. Ratner has filed a libel lawsuit against one of his accusers, Melanie Kohler.
Hundreds of women contacted an LA Times reporter to accuse Toback of sexual harassment and assault, including Selma Blair, Rachel McAdams, Julianne Moore and Caterina Scorsone.
Fallout: Just before the LA Times story broke, Toback told Rolling Stone that anyone who has accused him, “is a lying c---sucker or c--- or both.” Toback and Harvey Weinstein are both under investigation by the Beverly Hills police department.
Halperin sexually harassed five women while political director at ABC News over a decade ago. A sixth woman, journalist Emily Miller, said she was “attacked” by him.
Fallout: NBC News terminated Halperin’s contract as a special contributor, Showtime, which airs Halperin’s show “The Circus,” cut ties with the journalist, and CAA dropped him from their client list. Halperin issued a lengthy public apology.
Actor Anthony Rapp told Buzzfeed that Spacey made a sexual advance on him three decades ago when Rapp was 14. More than a dozen other individuals subsequently came forward with claims of sexual harassment or assault, including an anonymous former actor who said Spacey tried to rape him when he was 14.
Fallout: Spacey apologized to Rapp and also came out as gay, which was widely criticized. Netflix since announced that "House of Cards" would end and halted production on the sixth and final season. The Old Vic theater in London, where Spacey was artistic director, also opened a confidential tip line.
Five women accused C.K. of masturbating in front of them or requesting to in a New York Times report. The comedian later admitted the allegations were true in a statement, stopping short of apologizing for the behavior.
Fallout:HBO, Netflix, FX and TBS all cut ties with the comedian, dropping his projects from their networks. The premiere of his film "I Love You, Daddy" was canceled, and he was cut from "The Secret Life of Pets 2." His publicist, manager and touring agent all dropped him as a client.
Actress Ariane Bellamar, a former Playboy Playmate, tweeted that Piven groped her on the set of “Entourage” and at the Playboy Mansion, twice cornering and fondling her. Actress Cassidy Freeman later accused Piven of "predatory behavior."
Fallout: CBS is looking into the situation, and Piven has “unequivocally” denied the allegations and offered to take a polygraph test to prove his innocence.
The "Gossip Girl" star has been accused of sexual assault by two women, including actress Kristina Cohen, who said Westwick forced himself on her while she was napping at his house. Westwick denied the allegations, calling them "provably untrue."
Fallout: Westwick said he was "cooperating with the authorities" on an investigation to clear his name. Westwick was replaced on the BBC series “Ordeal by Innocence” after originally pulling it from its schedule.
Sources close to the production “Raising Buchanan” told The Hollywood Reporter Dick’s misconduct on set included kissing, licking, groping and making lewd propositions toward at least four members of the production.
Fallout: Dick was fired from the production of “Raising Buchanan” and from the film "Vampire Dad." Dick denied the groping claims but said it was “possible” he licked people.
Lionsgate international COO Kramer was investigated for an accusation of inappropriate behavior toward a female assistant.
Fallout: Kramer left Lionsgate, but the company’s internal investigation was ruled “inconclusive.”
Three women anonymously spoke with TheWrap claiming Baker, an E! News correspondent, sent inappropriate text messages and in one instance groped a woman at a party.
Fallout: E! is investigating the accusations and Baker will not appear on air during the investigation. Baker said in a statement to TheWrap that the “anonymous allegations are simply not true, and, frankly, are heartbreaking to hear.”
Several women alleged sexual misconduct against Signore, the creator of the YouTube series “Honest Trailers.” Signore was accused of sexual assault, sending inappropriate messages and making lewd comments to employees.
Fallout: His employers at Defy Media and Screen Junkies fired Signore following an investigation.
After being fired from Fox News earlier in April, it was reported in October by the New York Times that O’Reilly paid $32 million to settle sexual harassment claims from a coworker.
Fallout: O’Reilly told Matt Lauer he’d done “absolutely nothing wrong” and that this was “a political and financial hit job.”
Actor Blaise Godbe Lipman said APA agent Grasham fed him alcohol and sexually assaulted him when the actor was in his late teens. Actor Tyler Cornell filed a police report claiming the agent sodomized him. And teen Brady Lindsey described predatory behavior by Grasham.
Fallout: Actors Finn Wolfhard and Cameron Boyce left the agency, and Grasham was fired.
Najera, director of the CBS Diversity Sketch Comedy Showcase, made inappropriate and lewd comments to coworkers in multiple instances. Actress Rachel Bloom sent an email to participants warning of his behavior.
Fallout: Najera resigned from his role and issued a statement saying he was “heartbroken and confounded by deliberate and cruel defamations.”
Mother Jones' Washington Bureau Chief was investigated for the second time in three years for claims of inappropriate physical conduct and "rape jokes" in light of two emails from former staffers in 2014 and 2015, according to Politico.
Fallout: Mother Jones' CEO said that in the initial investigation, they determined there was "no misconduct." Corn denied the allegations but said it was possible his past actions had been misinterpreted.
Former country singer Austin Rick accused Webster, a veteran Nashville publicist, of repeatedly sexually assaulting, drugging and violating him in 2008 when Rick was 18.
Fallout: Webster will step down from his company Webster Public Relations and the company's name will be changed.
Actress Jessica Barth told TheWrap she was drugged and sexually assaulted by Guillod, the co-CEO of talent and literary management company Primary Wave Entertainment, back in 2012. Three additional women later accused Guillod of rape.
Fallout: Guillod announced he would take an immediate leave of absence from the company. Barth also approached the LAPD to revive her attempt to bring criminal charges.
Several female employees at The New Republic, where Fish is president and publisher, came forward about workplace interactions that have made "an uncomfortable environment," according to the New York Times.
Fallout: The magazine's owner Win McCormack asked Fish to remain on a leave of absence, pending an investigation.
Actor Terry Crews disclosed on Twitter that a Hollywood executive "groped his privates," and he named Venit and described in detail to Good Morning America his accusation.
The legendary former New Republic editor responded to multiple allegations of sexual harassment with a statement saying, "For my offenses against some of my colleagues in the past I offer a shaken apology and ask for their forgiveness.”
Fallout: The financial backer of a culture magazine Wieseltier had planned to launch announced that the magazine was suspended.
Rolling Stone founder Jann Wenner was accused of offering to trade sex for work by freelance journalist Ben Ryan. Wenner acknowledged the incident but denied any instance of quid pro quo.
NBC Universal Senior Vice President for Booking, News & Entertainment Matt Zimmerman "engaged in inappropriate conduct with more than one woman at NBCU," a company spokesperson told TheWrap.
Fallout: Zimmerman has been fired for sexual misconduct from NBCU.
Kreisberg, the co-creator and executive producer of "Arrow," "The Flash" and "Supergirl," is accused of sexual harassment and inappropriate physical contact with 15 women and four men over a number of years, many of whom worked on shows Kreisberg produced, according to Variety.
Fallout: Warner Bros. Television fired Kreisberg. "Supergirl" star Melissa Benoist along with other co-stars called for change in Hollywood following the allegations.
"Mad Men" writer Kater Gordon told The Information that Weiner once said to her “that [she] owed it to him to let him see [her] naked” while they were working alone together late at night.
Fallout: Weiner denied the accusation through a spokesperson, saying, “He does not remember saying this comment nor does it reflect a comment he would say to any colleague.”
Van Barnes, a transgender actress and former assistant to Tambor, posted a private accusation to her social media but had no additional comment for the media. Trace Lysette, another "Transparent" actress, also came forward claiming Tambor sexually harassed her.
Fallout: Amazon is conducting an investigation. Following reports that the show was exploring options to write Tambor's character out of the show, Tambor issued a statement stepping away from the show, though Amazon and Tambor have not come to an official decision to part ways.
Following Dreyfuss coming out in support of his son Harry's accusations against Kevin Spacey, writer Jessica Teich told Vulture that while working together, Dreyfuss exposed himself to her, made numerous advances over months and created an unsafe work environment.
Fallout: Dreyfuss "emphatically" denied exposing himself but said he "became an a--hole" in the late '70s and “flirted with all the women.”
Actor Anthony Edwards said producer and director Goddard molested him when he was a child and raped his friend over the course of several years. In 2014, Goddard was named in a lawsuit that was later dropped by Michael Egan, alongside “X-Men” director Bryan Singer and two other executives, accusing them of sexually abusing him as a teenager.
Fallout: Goddard has taken a leave of absence amid the allegations. Goddard's publicist Sam Singer "unequivocally" denied the accusation and said Goddard was a "mentor, teacher and a friend" to Edwards.
Model Scott R. Brunton told THR that after two drinks with Takei, he passed out and awoke with his pants down around his ankles and Takei was "groping my crotch and trying to get my underwear off."
Fallout: Takei said he was "shocked and bewildered" by the claims. A recent clip from the Howard Stern Show in which the host and Takei talk about grabbing men's genitals has since gone viral.
Former intern Amy Rose Spiegel accused Blackwell, Billboard's Chief Strategy Officer, of sexually harassing her when she was 19, along with other women who reported directly to him.
Fallout: Blackwell resigned from his position with Billboard.
New York Times political reporter Glenn Thrush was accused of sexual misconduct by several female journalists. Vox had obtained text messages between Thrush and a 23-year-old journalist in a larger report alleging unwanted groping and kissing.
Fallout: The Times suspended Thrush, but he will for now remain an MSNBC correspondent as they await the outcome of the Times investigation. Thrush issued a full statement he's never offered mentorship or advice with an expectation of something in return.
Radio host Leeann Tweeden said sitting U.S. Senator Al Franken groped and kissed her without her consent during a 2006 USO tour. A second woman also came forward accusing Franken of inappropriately grabbing her. Six women in all came forward.
Fallout: Franken resigned from the Senate on December 7 after Democratic senators called on him to step down after a sixth accuser stepped forward to accuse him of an unwanted kiss. Franken also apologized to Tweeden though he denied the specifics of some of the accusations against him.
Actress Aurora Perrinaeu filed a police report accusing "Girls" writer and executive producer Murray Miller of raping her when she was underage.
Fallout: Miller’s attorney said he “categorically and vehemently denies Ms. Perrineau’s outrageous claims." "Girls" creators Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner initially defended Miller, saying this was "one of the 3% of assault cases that are misreported every year." She has retracted that statement.
Ryan Seacrest was accused by an "E! News" wardrobe stylist of inappropriate behavior. The accusations have not been made public.
Fallout: E! opened an investigation and Seacrest denied the allegations.
The CAA agent was accused of sexual harassment and assault by actress Demi Mann.
Fallout: CAA fired Mitchell following an internal investigation. Mitchell “emphatically” denied Mann’s accusations in a press statement.
"One Tree Hill" star Hilarie Burton said showrunner Mark Schwahn forced himself on her on multiple occasions and issued a joint statement with the other women of the cast and crew.
Fallout: Schwahn was suspended by E! as the showrunner for "The Royals."
Three women have came forward in mid-December to accuse Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons of rape in an explosive New York Times article. The accusations followed model Keri Claussen Khalighi saying in an L.A. Times article that Simmons sexually assaulted her in 1991 when she was 17 and that Brett Ratner watched. Screenwriter Jenny Lumet also came forward with an accusation saying Simmons forced himself into her home and intimidated her.
Fallout: Simmons confirmed that he and Khalighi had met but said everything that happened was "completely consensual." Since the Lumet accusation, Simmons has stepped aside from his companies and his name has been removed from HBO's "All Def Comedy."
Eight women told the Washington Post that veteran newsman Charlie Rose engaged in a variety of unwanted sexual ways, including groping, making unwanted sexual advances and walking in front of them nude.
Fallout: Rose issued an apology; CBS, Bloomberg and PBS have cut ties with him.
Former Pixar employees said in a Hollywood Reporter article that Oscar-winning animation boss John Lasseter made a habit of “grabbing, kissing, making comments about physical attributes” of women at the company.
Fallout: Lasseter announced he would take a six-month sabbatical from Disney and Pixar and apologized for "missteps" with staffers.
Melissa Schuman, a member of the all-girl pop group Dream, wrote in a blog post that Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter raped her in his Santa Monica apartment in 2002. She wrote she was 18 and a virgin at the time.
Crystal Castles singer Alice Glass accused her bandmate Ethan Kath (real name Claudio Palmieri) of physical, emotional, sexual and psychological abuse over many years. Glass detailed her history with Kath in a blog post on her website explaining her decision to leave the band.
Fallout: Kath issued a statement via his attorney to Pitchfork denying the accusations: “I am outraged and hurt by the recent statements made by Alice about me and our prior relationship,” he said. “Her story is pure fiction and I am consulting my lawyers as to my legal options. Fortunately, there are many witnesses who can and will confirm that I was never abusive to Alice.”
Actor Jason Dottley accused manager Benny Medina, whose clients include Jennifer Lopez and Mariah Carey, of attempting to rape him in 2008 in Medina's Los Angeles home.
Fallout: Medina's attorney's told The Advocate he "categorically denies the allegation of attempted rape."
Twiggy Ramirez (right)
Jessicka Addams, a singer for band Jack Off Jill, accused the former bandmate of Marilyn Manson, Twiggy Ramirez (real name Jeordie White), of raping her while they were dating.
Fallout: Manson said on Twitter that he would be parting ways with Ramirez.
Fallout: Seagal has not responded to the allegations.
A Daily Mail article said a police report had accused Sylvester Stallone of sexual assault against a 16-year-old girl back in 1986. It went on to say that the unnamed teen was "intimidated" into having sex with Stallone and his bodyguard, Michael De Luca.
Fallout: Stallone's publicist said the report was a "ridiculous, categorically false story," and Stallone's spokesperson said, "at no time was Mr. Stallone ever contacted by any authorities or anyone else regarding this matter.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, actor Tom Sizemore was told to leave a film set in 2003 after an 11-year-old actress told her mother Sizemore had touched her genitals. He returned to the set for reshoots after the child's parents declined to press charges. A dozen cast and crew members confirmed to THR that Sizemore was sent home.
Fallout: Sizemore denied the allegations at the time and the actress, now 26, declined to comment to THR.
Bob Weinstein (left)
Bob Weinstein, brother to Harvey, was accused of sexual harassment by TV producer Amanda Segel, who said Weinstein repeatedly invited her to his home and hotel room over the course of a three-month period.
Evan Stephens Hall, the singer and songwriter behind the indie rock band Pinegrove, wrote in a statement on the band's Facebook page that he was accused of "sexual coercion." Hall wrote that he "monumentally misread the situation" and "caused someone I care about deep emotional pain and I'm so sorry."
Fallout: Pinegrove has cancelled their upcoming tour.
The long-time "Today" show host was accused of "inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace." A staffer issued NBC News chairman a "detailed complaint."
Three female journalists at NPR filed complaints of sexual harassment against NPR Chief News Editor David Sweeney, including Sweeney attempting to give unexpected and unwanted kisses and gifts.
Fallout: Sweeney departed NPR following an internal review of his conduct.
Bette Midler said that Geraldo Rivera and an unnamed producer once groped her, shoved her into a bathroom and forced poppers under her nose. Midler detailed the account in a 1991 interview with Barbara Walters that has gone viral.
Fallout: Rivera issued an apology to Midler and other women named in his "tawdry" memoir. Fox News issued a statement saying that a series of Rivera's tweets criticizing Matt Lauer "do not reflect the views of Fox News or its management."
Australia's Daily Telegraph published a statement from the Sydney Theatre Company saying it had “received a complaint alleging that Mr. Geoffrey Rush had engaged in inappropriate behavior” during a 2015 production of "King Lear" -- after the paper reported that an unnamed actress had accused Rush of touching her inappropriately.
Fallout: Rush denied the unspecified accusations. Rush announced he would "step aside" from his duties as President of the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts and sued he Australia newspaper that reported them. A lawyer for Rush wrote to TheWrap, "Mr Rush has not been the subject of any sexual misconduct allegations as implied by your article."
In a civil suit filed in December 2017, publicist Haleigh Breest accused the Oscar-winning director of "Crash" was accused of rape. Subsequently, three more women came forward with accusations of sexual misconduct, including one other case of assault.
Fallout: Haggis denied the first rape allegation in a counter-suit. And his lawyer responded to the second wave of accusations by saying, "He didn't rape anybody."
Android creator Andy Rubin was investigated by Google for an “inappropriate relationship with a subordinate” during his time at the tech giant, according to The Information.
Fallout: Rubin is taking a one-month leave of absence from his role as CEO of the smartphone company Essential for "personal reasons." The Google investigation found Rubin's "behavior was improper and showed bad judgement.”
Nine women came forward in a New York Times report to accuse playwright Israel Horovitz of sexual misconduct, including one woman who said Horovitz pressed her against a wall and forcefully kissed her when she was 16. Another woman says she was raped by Horovitz when she was 19.
Fallout: Horovitz said he has a different memory of these events and apologized. His son, Adam Horovitz, said in his own statement: "I believe the allegations against my father are true, and I stand behind the women that made them." The Times adds that the Gloucester Stage Company, where he served as a founding artistic director, has cut ties with Horovitz.
Garrison Keillor, the former host of "A Prairie Home Companion," was accused of "inappropriate behavior."
Fallout: Keillor was fired by Minnesota Public Radio. "A Prairie Home Companion" will continue under a new title and with a new host, and MPR will no longer broadcast old episodes of the show. Keillor says he was fired for touching a "woman's bare back."
A former costume designer accused "Prison Break" actor Robert Knepper of sexual assault in 1991, telling The Hollywood Reporter he shoved her against the wall, reached under her dress and grabbed her crotch. Four more women have since come forward accusing Knepper of sexual misconduct, including one who says Knepper forced oral sex on him in 2010.
Fallout: Knepper will remain as a series regular on the CW series "iZombie" after an internal investigation by Warner Bros. TV found no evidence of wrongdoing on set for the show. Knepper said in a statement to THR the accusations against him are false.
Harold Ford Jr.
Harold Ford Jr., a Managing Director at Morgan Stanley and an on-air contributor at MSNBC, was accused of grabbing a female reporter he had a professional relationship with and routinely harassing her.
Fallout: Morgan Stanley fired Ford from his position with the company. Ford said in a statement, "This simply did not happen," adding that he would sue both the accuser and Morgan Stanley.
Jon Heely, Disney's director of music publishing, was charged with three counts of felony sex abuse involving two underage girls from a decade ago.
Fallout: Disney suspended Heely from his position. Heely pleaded not guilty to the charges at an arraignment.
Four women accused celebrity chef Mario Batali of sexual misconduct and groping over two decades.
Fallout: ABC removed Batali from the show "The Chew," and Batali said he would step away from the day-to-day management of his Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group.
The New Yorker found in an investigation that contributor Ryan Lizza had "engaged in what we believe was improper sexual conduct."
Fallout: The New Yorker fired Lizza and CNN, where he is also an on-air contributor, said Lizza won't be allowed on- air as they look into the matter. Lizza issued a statement saying his firing was "a terrible mistake" and involved a "respectful relationship with a woman" Lizza was dating.
PBS - Frontline
An investigation conducted by PBS found that TV personality Smiley engaged in sexual relationships with his subordinates following reports by 10 male and female witnesses, several of them former employees.
Fallout: PBS "indefinitely" suspended Smiley's talk show program following the accusations. Smiley criticized PBS's investigation and said he was not provided due process or informed of the investigation. "This has gone too far," he said.
Pastry chef and judge of "The Great American Baking Show" Iuzzini was accused of inappropriate behavior by four, unnamed former female employees during his time at the Manhattan restaurant Jean-Georges. According to a report in Mic, the women described being touched, licked and groped by Iuzzini without their permission.
Fallout: ABC pulled the show from their schedule after airing just one episode. Iuzzini denied some of the accusations.
According to the New York Times, five dancers in the New York City Ballet accused the ballet's leader Peter Martins of physical and verbal abuse. He was also accused of sexual harassment.
Fallout: Martins denies the accusations but announced in January 2018 that he would retire.
Dan Harmon admitted to past misconduct after Megan Ganz, a former writer on Harmon's show "Community," called him out on Twitter, but did not specify his behavior.
Fallout: Harmon apologized to Ganz, saying he was "disgusted and sorry that I stained our show and your talent with my selfish, childish s---," earning a sharp response from Ganz in return.
Four actresses -- Patricia Fagan, Kristin Booth, Diana Bentley and Hannah Miller -- have filed separate civil lawsuits accusing Schultz, an actor on "Alias Grace" and the artistic director of Canada's Soulpepper Theatre Company, of repeatedly groping and kissing women without permission and exposing himself on stage. The lawsuits allege the misbehavior extends 16 years.
Fallout: The women are seeking 3.6 million Canadian dollars in damages from Schultz and 4.3 million Canadian dollars from the theater company. Schultz agreed to step aside while Soulpepper conducts an investigation but said he would "vehemently defend" himself.
According to the Los Angeles Times, male model Jason Boyce filed a complaint against fashion photographer Bruce Weber of forcing him to rub his genitals during a 2014 photo shoot. Several others also accused Weber of sexual misconduct.
Fallout: Vanity Fair canceled an event planned for Weber. Weber denied the claims and said he would "vigorously defend myself."
The editor in chief of the gaming website IGN was placed under investigation for "alleged misconduct."
Fallout: IGN announced in January 2018 that it was cutting ties with Butts, who joined the company in 2012.
CBS News found in an investigation that its Washington, D.C.-based political director Steve Chaggaris had engaged in "inappropriate behavior" that violated company policy, but did not specify the nature or extent of his actions.
Fallout: CBS News has severed ties with Chaggaris (who could not be reached for comment).
Miss America Organization CEO Sam Haskell was found to have sent disparaging emails about the contest's 2013 winner ,Mallory Hagan, mocking her weight and purported sex life. Haskell also referred to other contestants as "c--ts."
Fallout: Haskell, President and COO Josh Randle, Board Chair Lynn Weidner and board member Tammy Haddad all resigned. Dick Clark Productions has also cut ties with the organization.
Kaitlyn Terpstra and an actress who chose to only be identified as Kim said during a 2015 production of "Hair," director Ben Vereen lured them into a hot tub while he was naked, pressed his erect penis on their bodies and pressured them to perform oral sex.
Fallout: Vereen apologized for his "inappropriate conduct."
Fox News reporter James Rosen was accused by multiple female employees of sending racy messages to his former co-workers, aggressively pursuing sexual relationships with colleagues, and groping or forcibly kissing female Fox News employees.
Fallout: Rosen left the network in December, but no reason was initially given for his departure. In January it was reported he was ousted following an investigation into his workplace behavior.
Five women, including four students at the shuttered Studio 4, and one who considered him a mentor, accused actor James Franco of sexually exploitative behavior. Sarah Tither-Kaplan told the Los Angeles Times Franco asked women on a production to perform an orgy scene in which he would simulate oral sex on the women, but removed a protective plastic guard over their vaginas. A fifth accuser, Violet Paley, claims she was pressured to perform oral sex on Franco when she began a romantic relationship with him in 2016.
Fallout: Franco's attorney disputed the allegations to the Times and pointed to his recent comments on "The Late Show." The New York Times also cancelled a recent panel event for Franco's film "The Disaster Artist" citing “the controversy surrounding recent allegations.”
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From Brett Ratner, Kevin Spacey, Mark Halperin, James Toback to Louis CK
In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct scandal, women and men alike have been more vocal about speaking out against unwanted sexual advances and contact. The accusations have been many, and the reaction and fallout has been swift across the industry.