Since news broke of Harvey Weinstein's alleged misconduct, a tidal wave of other famous people have been accused of sexual harassment. The first step to changing what is clearly a broken and dangerous power structure is to listen to the reported victims and learn the names of the accused people. When we recognize how these men operate, we can take the necessary steps to end their egregious behavior. As actress and Weinstein accuser Rose McGowan put it, this behavior "cannot and will not stand."
The list of alleged sexual harassers in Hollywood and beyond is long, and it is growing by the day. It includes men, like Weinstein, who are major behind-the-scenes players and power brokers; actors who have attained legendary status; newsmen who have built long and respected careers; celebrity chefs, former presidents, and women, too. Toxic masculinity is everywhere - these people accused after Harvey Weinstein are living proof of that.
Sources from the production of the AppleTV+ miniseries Master of the Air told Rolling Stone in a May 31, 2022, report that director Cary Fukunaga has shown an “absolute, clear-cut abuse of power” when interacting with young women on set.
They alleged that Fukunaga was trying to engage in romantic relationships with these women. The accusations come after a 23-year-old actress and skateboarder alleged on Instagram that Fukunaga had groomed her when she was just a teenager, after approaching her at a skateboard park to offer her a role in a commercial.
His lawyer denied the claims, releasing a statement to Rolling Stone saying, “There is nothing salacious about pursuing friendships or consensual romantic relationships with women… No one ever - not once - voiced such sentiments… He creates a work environment that is creative, collaborative and welcoming to all."
Matthew Morrison was fired as a judge on So You Think You Can Dance after one of the female contestants complained that he sent her “inappropriate” flirty messages, per a May 31, 2022, report.
A source told People that Morrison was fired for having “an inappropriate relationship with a female contestant.” The source added, “They didn’t have sex, but he reached out to her through flirty direct messages on social media. She felt uncomfortable with his line of comments and went to producers, who then got Fox involved. He was fired after they did their own investigation.”
“I cannot apologize enough to all involved,” Morrison said.
Two women approached The Hollywood Reporter, separately, regarding sexual assault allegations against Sex and the City, and And Just Like That star Chris Noth. Reportedly, the promotions for the new show were triggering enough that the women felt the need to step forward. According to the December 16, 2021, report, one incident occurred in Los Angeles in 2004, while the other was said to happen in New York in 2015. Both women, who used pseudonyms, were between 20 and 40 years younger than Noth at the times of the alleged rapes.
Noth denied all of the allegations in a statement to Us Weekly the same day the THR report came out, saying, "The accusations against me made by individuals I met years, even decades, ago are categorically false. These stories could’ve been from 30 years ago or 30 days ago - no always means no - that is a line I did not cross. The encounters were consensual. It’s difficult not to question the timing of these stories coming out. I don’t know for certain why they are surfacing now, but I do know this: I did not assault these women.”
In August 2020, 30 women came forward with accusations of unwanted touching by Cuba Gooding, Jr. He faces three counts of forcible touching and three counts of sex abuse to the third degree, in separate incidents involving three different women in New York.
The actor denies all wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty to all charges. In court, his attorney said, "We believe that the video unequivocally will show that Cuba committed absolutely no crime and we expect this case to be dismissed in one day."
In July 2019, SAG-AFTRA found Kip Pardue guilty of misconduct, and fined him $6,000 for harassing actress Sarah Scott in 2018. In a letter sent to Scott (and shared with the LA Times), SAG-AFTRA said Kip Pardue's behavior was "inconsistent" with their code of conduct. This comes after Scott reported Pardue had become aroused while filming a scene for Mogulettes and placed Scott's hand on his groin. She also alleged that he then invited her to his dressing room and masturbated in front of her.
The organization said that if Pardue takes an online workplace sexual harrassment training module within 90 days of receiving his letter, his fine will be reduced to $3,000.
Screenwriter and comic book writer Max Landis was accused of sexual harassment by multiple women in December 2017. Some people say Landis's behavior is an "open secret" in Hollywood, and that his father, director John Landis, has shielded him from exposure before.
In June of 2019, The Daily Beast released an exposé in which eight women detailed the emotional, physical, and sexual abuse they were subjected to by Max Landis.
Joe Biden's inappropriate behavior with women is described as an "open secret" in political circles. There have been multiple articles discussing the way he approaches women in public, resting his hands on their shoulders and standing a little too close.
A 2014 Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor of Nevada, Lucy Flores, experienced Biden's uncomfortable touching and an awkward kiss and described the moment as confusing, unsettling, "demeaning, and disrespectful."
Prominent anime voice actor Vic Mignogna, who starred in 2004's Fullmetal Alchemist, Dragon Ball Super: Broly, and more, has been notably inappropriate with fans and female coworkers.
io9 spoke with several women who have encountered Mignogna, each of whom shared stories of persistent proposition, kissing without consent, and an uncomfortable closeness that provoked staff at a Phoenix comic convention to employ a "Code Vic" whenever a certain young female was around.
In response to the allegations, Mignogna claims any reported encounters were consensual and that he backed off when denied.
Funimation, the top media company for dubbed anime, which employs Vic, has recently let him go after an investigation into his behavior.
On February 13, 2019, The New York Times broke an expose on the singer-songwriter and his reported predatory behaviors. Seven women - including Adams's ex-wife Mandy Moore and a woman who was underage when she was communicating with Adams - claimed that he abused them in both psychological and emotional manners.
Adams's lawyer said the allegations are "extremely serious and outlandish" and were made by "disgrunted individuals" who blamed their lack of musical success on him. Adams also tweeted the same day, saying he is "not a perfect man," and apologized "to anyone I have ever hurt, however unintentionally."
Bryan Singer has been the subject of misconduct lawsuits and allegations since his involvement with 1994's The Usual Suspects. In January 2019, The Atlantic unveiled an investigative report alleging that Singer seduced and raped underage boys.
Four men spoke to the publication and outlined their experiences with the director. Several alleged that Singer got them drunk and then sexually assaulted them. One of the men, Andy, said he was only 15 years old when he and Singer had sexual relations at a Beverly Hills mansion party.
Back in October 2018, Singer tried to put a halt to the article, saying in an Instagram post that "I have known for some time that [there may be] a negative article about me... In today's climate where people's careers are being harmed by mere accusations, what [reporters] are attempting to do is a reckless disregard for the truth, making assumptions that are fictional and irresponsible."
Singer has not made a public comment since the release of The Atlantic article.
Early in the summer of 2018, Christine Blasey Ford wrote an anonymous letter alleging that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her 30 years prior when they were both high school students. On September 12, the story broke without her permission, and Kavanaugh adamantly denied any wrongdoing.
On September 17, Ford came forward, wanting to set the record straight. Ford claimed Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed and fondled her over her clothes as one of his friends watched. She alleged that he attempted to take her bathing suit off (underneath her clothing), and she screamed, so he covered her mouth.
Even after Ford made her identity known, Kavanaugh still denied her assault claim, calling it "completely false."
A week after Ford confirmed her story, Deborah Ramirez accused Kavanaugh of exposing himself during a party at Yale in the '80s. The allegation came right on the heels of attorney Michael Avenatti's announcement that he was representing another woman who claims to have known Kavanaugh during high school.
On September 26, Avenatti identified the third accuser, Julie Swetnick. In an affidavit, Swetnick claims Kavanaugh and others spiked girls' drinks at their high school parties in the '80s with the intention to "cause girls to lose inhibitions and their ability to say 'No.'" Swetnick elaborates, saying Kavanaugh and his friend Mark Judge did so girls "could then be 'gang raped' in a side room or bedroom by a 'train' of numerous boys." Swetnick says she was the victim of this practice, and Judge and Kavanaugh were present when it happened.
Actor Anthony Rapp told his disturbing story of being a 14-year-old child actor in 1986 when he was allegedly molested by Kevin Spacey, who would have been around 27 at the time. More men have come forward to claim Spacey assaulted them, most accusations occurring during his tenure as artistic director of the Old Vic in London. One described a sexual relationship when he was 14 and Spacey was 24 years old.
One ex-employee told The Guardian, "We were all involved in keeping it quiet. I witnessed him groping men many times in all sorts of different situations."
Spacey has since sought treatment. He was also fired from House of Cards, and his charitable organization, the Kevin Spacey Foundation, closed.
On September 4, 2018, the Los Angeles County District Attorney dismissed cases against Spacey and two other accused assailants, Anthony Anderson and Steven Seagal.
Jeff Fager, longtime executive producer of 60 Minutes, was fired from his position on September 12, 2018, which many believe is due to accusations of inappropriate conduct.
"Jeff Fager is leaving the company effective immediately," David Rhodes, CBS News president, said in an official statement, although he added that "the action today is not directly related to the allegations surfaced in press reports, which continue to be investigated independently. However, he violated company policy and it is our commitment to uphold these policies at every level." What policy Fager allegedly violated is unclear.
Fager was first accused in July 2018 when 19 former and current employees confided to The New Yorker that Fager "allowed harassment in the division."
"It's top down, this culture of older men who have all this power and you are nothing," one producer anonymously said. "The company is shielding lots of bad behavior."
Fager denied the allegations, and said the reason he was let go was due to his interactions with CBS reporters concerning the allegations:
The company’s decision had nothing to do with the false allegations printed in The New Yorker. Instead, they terminated my contract early because I sent a text message to one of our own CBS reporters demanding that she be fair in covering the story. My language was harsh and, despite the fact that journalists receive harsh demands for fairness all the time, CBS did not like it. One such note should not result in termination after 36 years, but it did.
Over the weekend of August 25, three of the five members of Chicago-based garage rock band The Orwells – Mario Cuomo (singer), Henry Brinner (drums), and Grant Brinner (bass) – were accused of sexual assault via a Reddit thread. The band responded to the accusations on August 28 and said they "emphatically deny these baseless allegations brought as a personal attack against us."
On August 29, the band dissolved with a tweet stating "The Orwells have disbanded."
Me Too supporters were thrown for a loop in August 2018 when Asia Argento, one of the movement's biggest proponents and one of the first women to come out about Weinstein's actions, was accused of sexual assaulting actor Jimmy Bennett when he was a teen. The two worked together on the 2004 film The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things, in which Bennet played her son. Argento denies the claims, saying Bennet was in a dire financial state and tried to extort her.
"Bennett knew my boyfriend, Anthony Bourdain, was a man of great perceived wealth and had his own reputation as a beloved public figure to protect," Argento said in a statement regarding the allegations. "Anthony insisted the matter be handled privately... [he] was afraid of the possible negative publicity that such person, whom he considered dangerous, could have brought upon us."
Bennett responded to this denial, saying, “I did not initially speak out about my story because I chose to handle it in private with the person who wronged me... My trauma resurfaced as she came out as a victim herself. I have not made a public statement in the past days and hours because I was ashamed and afraid to be part of the public narrative.”
Ronan Farrow broke yet another story about sexual harassment in Hollywood in July 2018 about CBS CEO Leslie Moonves. Moonves is a major player in the entertainment industry with a lot of influence and power. The allegations include unwanted kissing and touching. Farrow covers both events that occurred over two decades prior and recent events.
In September 2018, CBS Corporation board members negotiated Moonves's exit from the media conglomerate. New allegations emerged during these negotiations, bringing the total number of accusers from six to 12.
Today show anchor Matt Lauer was fired on November 29, 2017 following a sexual harassment complaint from former NBC News employee Brooke Nevils. NBC News president Andrew Lack said this was the first such allegation made against Lauer, but that he was "also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident."
Nevils, who was originally presented as an anonymous female staffer, said Lauer assaulted her during the 2014 Sochi Olympics. A Variety report included stories of Lauer gifting a female colleague a sex toy, exposing himself to another coworker, and making lewd comments about women. Lauer also reportedly had a button installed under his desk that locked his office door from the inside, allowing him to harass women without fear of anyone walking in on him.
The full details of Nevils's assault were made public in Ronan Farrow's 2019 book, Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators.
Chris Hardwick – the founder of Nerdist and host of The Talking Dead and @midnight – was accused of long-term emotional and sexual abuse by his ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra. Dykstra posted a piece on medium outlining years of mistreatment and sexual assault. She posted the piece late in the evening on June 14, 2018, and it began to gain social media traction on June 15.
Although she did not directly name Hardwick, she did say the man was significantly older than her (Hardwick was born in 1971; she was born in 1988) and that he was sober (Hardwick adopted a sober lifestyle in 2003).
Dykstra claims that her ex set up rules for her, which included staying in at night, not having male friends, and not drinking alcohol. She also alleges that he would routinely assault her.
"I was terrified to piss him off – so I did what he said... including let him sexually assault me. Regularly. I was expected to be ready for him when he came home from work."
A few hours after the post went viral, Nerdist made an official statement condoning "discrimination, harassment, and other forms of abuse."
Nerdist's parent company, Legendary, also issued a statement, emphasizing the fact Hardwick had "no operational involvement with Nerdist for the two years preceding the expiration of his contract in December 2017... the company has removed all reference to Mr. Hardwick even as the original Founder of Nerdist pending further investigation."
On June 15, Hardwick made an official statement denying the allegations:
These are very serious allegations and not to be taken lightly which is why I’ve taken the day to consider how to respond. I was heartbroken to read Chloe’s post. Our three year relationship was not perfect – we were ultimately not a good match and argued – even shouted at each other – but I loved her, and did my best to uplift and support her as a partner and companion in any way and at no time did I sexually assault her.
On May 24th, 2018, after months of reporting and investigation, CNN posted an article examining allegations from 16 people claiming they witnessed (or were victims of) sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior by veteran actor Morgan Freeman. According to one woman who worked as a manager at Revelations (Freeman's production company):
If I ever passed him he would stare at me in an awkward way, would look me up and down sometimes stopping and just staring. One time he stopped, looked me up and down as I walked into a room of people, and everyone burst out laughing. And I literally froze feeling very uncomfortable and one of the people in the office said, 'Don't worry, that's just Morgan.'
In addition to a pattern of looking women up and down, CNN reported that witnesses have claimed to see Freeman subject female employees to unwanted touching and lewd comments. Allegedly, his behavior was not limited to his offices at Revelation, but extended to film sets and even press junkets.
In October 2017, Terry Crews tweeted about an unnamed "high level Hollywood executive" who grabbed his genitals at a party. Crews said he thought about retaliating but then thought about how "the whole thing would appear... '240 lbs. Black Man stomps out Hollywood Honcho' would be the headline the next day."
The Hollywood executive was later identified as Adam Venit, the head of the motion picture group at William Morris Endeavor. Crews filed a civil suit with the Los Angeles Police Department, during which he revealed Expendables producer Avi Lerner called Crews's manager asking him to drop the case against Venit so Crews could appear in the film.
Crews turned down the role, saying, "Abusers protect abusers — and this is one thing I had to decide, whether I was going to draw the line on. Am I going to be a part of this or am I gonna take a stand, and there are projects I had to turn down."
On June 19, 2018, The Daily Beast posted a massive exposé outlining the alleged details of an "emo sex cult" run by former Aiden frontman Will Francis. Under his stage name, William Control, the singer released several albums catering to what he claimed was BDSM culture.
Women who were a part of his group, however, told a different story. These women alleged that Francis physically and emotionally abused them. They claimed Francis made them get tattoos of his initials and sign sexual contracts in their own blood. A part of the purported contract reads:
"My body is His to use in any way He should choose, and I will never object to any actions He chooses to perform, or have myself perform on Him. There is no limitation to what kind of pain I am willing to endure for my Master."
The allegations started with Vitoria Chan, who wrote a Facebook post claiming she was groomed into his cult starting at the age of 14; she clarified that to her knowledge, Francis did not have sex with underage girls.
On June 7, 2018, Francis posted on Facebook again, saying:
"The truth is: I went into the police for questioning about these allegations earlier this year. After showing the detective my side of the story, including private communication, he recommended no charges be pressed, because it was clear the behavior was consensual.
"I have, in the past, engaged in heavy role play and bondage relationships WITH consent. However, I do not engage in that sort of play anymore. And for anyone who feels as though I have hurt them or violated their consent, I am sorry. It won’t ever happen again. There are lots of things that have been said that are outright lies. I have never been with underage girls. I have never been involved in a "sex cult.""
Comedian Louis C.K. was accused of sexual misconduct by several women in November 2017 after an explosive New York Times story called him out. Five separate women said Louis C.K. either masturbated in front of them or asked to masturbate in front of them. The women said the action was not wanted, and that he forced it upon them. Two of the women said after they told their manager what happened, they were blacklisted from several high level productions.
A day after the article came out, Louis C.K. confirmed the women's allegations and apologized to them. He said he didn't realize at the time that he was abusing his position of power against the women to put them in a situation they didn't want to be in.
Don't think age or infirmity will keep a man from inappropriate behavior. Two women claim that George H.W. Bush groped them during recent meetings with the former President. "He touched me from behind from his wheelchair with his wife Barbara Bush by his side," one accuser said. "He told me a dirty joke. And then, all the while being photographed, touched me again."
And Bush didn't deny it. He's apologized for what his spokesperson called grabbing "women's rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner." Whatever that means.
Multiple women accused actor Steven Seagal of sexual misconduct and assault in January 2018. One woman, Regina Simons, said Seagal raped her on the set of the 1994 film On Deadly Ground. Another woman, Faviola Dadis, said Seagal demanded she audition for a role in a bikini, and then groped her during her meeting. She was 17.
Several actresses, including Julianna Margulies, Katherine Heigl, Portia de Rossi, and Jenny McCarthy, have come forward with stories about Seagal's misconduct as well. Several former assistants have lodged complaints against him too.
On September 4, 2018, the Los Angeles County District Attorney dismissed cases against Seagal and two other accused assailants, Anthony Anderson and Kevin Spacey.
On May 4, 2018, writer Zinzi Clemmons accused Junot Díaz of cornering her and then forcibly kissing her. Many other women writers chimed in accusing Díaz of aggressive and inappropriate behavior at readings and other literary functions.