The (Incomplete) List Of Powerful Men Accused Of Sexual Harassment After Harvey Weinstein
(CNN) — It’s only been a few weeks since the sexual assault allegations against media mogul Harvey Weinstein exploded into public view. Since then there have been new allegations made against other powerful men in various industries seemingly almost every day.
From companies taking a second look at their sexual harassment policies to the tide of #MeToo stories flooding social media, the controversy has sparked the biggest national conversation on sexual harassment since the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas battle in the early ’90s. Prominent actors and actresses have come forward with stories that put fellow Hollywood A-listers sharply in the spotlight.
This list of men who’ve been accused of sexual harassment focuses just on allegations on which CNN has reported. There are accusations against other powerful men out there. As the days and weeks go on, this list will undoubtedly keep growing. This list also doesn’t include powerful men like Bill Cosby, Roger Ailes or Donald Trump; allegations against them came before Weinstein.
Weinstein’s web began to unravel in early October, after The New York Times published a story detailing numerous accusations of sexual harassment against the powerful movie producer, whose films have won a number of Academy Awards. The Times story detailed three decades’ worth of sexual harassment and unwanted physical contact accusations made against Weinstein by a number of women, including actress Ashley Judd. The piece also mentioned at least eight settlements Weinstein had reached with his accusers through the years.
It started a flood of new accusations from dozens of other women, including some who said Weinstein had raped them. Weinstein has denied any claims of nonconsensual sex. He was later fired from his own film company and his wife left him.
Rumors and stories about Weinstein had been circulating through Hollywood’s grapevine for years, leading many to ask how such alleged behavior could go on for so long.
Actor Anthony Rapp accused Kevin Spacey of making a sexual advance toward him when both of them were working on Broadway in 1986. Rapp was 14 at the time and Spacey was 26. Rapp alleged Spacey approached him in a bedroom at a house party and “picked [him] up like a groom picks up the bride” and put him on the bed, falling on top of him.
While Spacey said he could not remember whether the alleged encounter happened, he apologized. In the same tweeted statement on October 30, he also came out as a gay man. Many criticized his response, saying his sexuality had nothing to do with what amounted to possible sexual assault of a minor.
Spacey stars on the popular Netflix series “House of Cards.” After the allegation became public, Netflix announced the next season of the show, Season 6, would be its final one. Though the announcement was based on a decision pre-dating Rapp’s revelations, Netflix and Media Rights Capital, which produces the series, later announced production on the final season would be halted as well.
The Hollywood screenwriter and director behind films like “The Pick-up Artist,” “The Gambler” and “Bugsy” was accused by multiple women of sexual harassment throughout the years in a piece from the Los Angeles Times. The women said Toback would lure them to hotel rooms, movie trailers and other places for what was billed as interviews or auditions. But the women say these meetings would quickly turn sexual in nature.
Toback told the newspaper he had never met any of the women — or if he did meet them, it “was for five minutes and (he had) no recollection.” He said that for the last 22 years, it was “biologically impossible” for him to take part in the behavior the women described in the article, saying he had diabetes and a heart condition requiring medication, the Los Angeles Times reported. He declined to elaborate.
The Los Angeles Times said after it ran its initial story, more than 300 other women contacted it to describe similar encounters.
Actresses Selma Blair and Rachel McAdams also recounted sexual harassment from Toback in interviews with Vanity Fair. Blair alleged that Toback asked her to audition for him naked during a meeting and then requested that she let him rub himself against her. She also said he threatened her with violence if she said anything about the encounter.
McAdams met with Toback under the guise that they’d be talking about work, in particular, a role in 2001’s “Harvard Man,” which Toback wrote. Instead, McAdams said their meeting was filled with inappropriate comments from Toback that left her feeling uncomfortable.
Toback’s agent, Jeff Berg, told CNN in October he would pass a request for a comment on to his client. Berg has since ceased representing Toback.
The Oscar-winning actor and director was one of the first to come out and denounce Weinstein’s alleged behavior. But then he found himself the target of a sex harassment accusation after old videos began to surface of Affleck on “MTV’s Total Request Live” with actress Hilarie Burton. She said Affleck groped her during an appearance on the show, which she co-hosted at the time.
“I acted inappropriately toward Ms. Burton and I sincerely apologize,” Affleck later wrote on Twitter.
George H.W. Bush
The 41st president of the United States apologized to an actress after she wrote in a now-deleted Instagram post that Bush sexually assaulted her while she posed for a picture with him. Heather Lind said Bush touched her inappropriately from behind twice and told her “a dirty joke.”
“President Bush would never — under any circumstance — intentionally cause anyone distress, and he most sincerely apologizes if his attempt at humor offended Ms. Lind,” the former President’s spokesman said.
Later, in a second statement, spokesman Jim McGrath said:
“At age 93, President Bush has been confined to a wheelchair for roughly five years, so his arm falls on the lower waist of people with whom he takes pictures. To try to put people at ease, the president routinely tells the same joke — and on occasion, he has patted women’s rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner. Some have seen it as innocent; others clearly view it as inappropriate. To anyone he has offended, President Bush apologizes most sincerely.”
Two other women — actress Jordana Grolnick and a woman who wishes to remain anonymous — later came forward with their own similar accusations.
Nickelodeon fired the creator of “The Loud House” animated show after a dozen women accused him, in a story from the Hollywood Reporter, of “sexual harassment, unwanted advances and inappropriate behavior.”
The accusers also said Savino would threaten to blacklist women he was no longer involved with.
“I am deeply sorry and I am ashamed,” Savino wrote in a letter posted on his Facebook account. “Although it was never my intention, I now understand that the impact of my actions and my communications created an uncomfortable environment.”
Price, the head of Amazon Studios, quit five days after being put on leave after a producer accused him of sexual harassment.
Price was suspended after a story from The Hollywood Reporter detailing harassment allegations against him made by Isa Hackett, a producer of the Amazon series “The Man in the High Castle.”
The harassment accusations stemmed from an incident in 2015 at Comic-Con. Hackett alleged that Price repeatedly made lewd comments to her, despite her rebuffs.
Hackett told The Hollywood Reporter that she reported the improper behavior to Amazon at the time.
The celebrity chef stepped down from the company he founded after about two dozen current and former female employees accused him and other male workers of sexual harassment.
They described a hostile corporate culture where sexual harassment flourished. The accounts included inappropriate touching and comments from male employees and managers, some of whom tried to leverage their power for sex. Those who complained were berated, ostracized or ignored.
One former employee filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, claiming that Besh “attempted to coerce” her during a “monthslong sexual relationship.”
Besh, who has not responded directly to the allegations, enjoyed celebrity status in a city whose identity is tied to its food. His restaurant group employs more than 1,000 people in New Orleans, San Antonio and Baltimore in top-rated restaurants such as August, Lüke, Domenica and Shaya. Harrah’s New Orleans Casino said it is terminating its relationship with the restaurant group.
At least a dozen women have accused journalist Mark Halperin of sexually harassing them or assaulting them, with at least some of the incidents coming during his time as political director at ABC News. At first, five women accused Halperin of propositioning employees for sex, kissing and grabbing one woman’s breasts against her will and other forms of inappropriate touching. Days later, more women came forward with other claims, including that Halperin masturbated in front of an ABC News employee and that he violently threw another woman against a restaurant window before trying to kiss her.
Halperin issued two apologies in response to the accusations, saying in the first he “did pursue relationships with women” that he worked with but that he now understands “that my behavior was inappropriate and caused others pain.” He did, however, deny grabbing a woman’s breasts and pressing his genitals against the bodies of three other women.
Widely considered to be one of the pre-eminent political journalists, Halperin, 52, also co-authored the best-selling book “Game Change,” which was made into an HBO movie starring Julianne Moore as Sarah Palin; and anchored a television show on Bloomberg TV. He served as an analyst for NBC News, making frequent appearances on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” Both NBC News and MSNBC severed ties with him once the allegations surfaced.
At the end of October, Oreskes was placed on leave from his position as a top editor at NPR after two female journalists came forward and said Oreskes had made unwanted sexual advances towards them. The alleged incidents happened two decades ago, when Oreskes was working at the New York Times and the women were seeking jobs there. Both women said Oreskes kissed them during career-oriented business meetings. A third accuser, who works at NPR, filed a complaint about Oreskes’ behavior in 2015 after she said he “hijacked a career counseling session into a three-hour-long dinner that delved deeply into personal territory.”
Oreskes admitted to wrongdoing in an internal memo obtained by CNN.
“I am deeply sorry to the people I hurt. My behavior was wrong and inexcusable, and I accept full responsibility,” Oreskes wrote.
“To my colleagues, I am grateful for every minute I’ve had to work with each of you,” he wrote. “NPR has an important job to do. Public radio matters so much and I will always be your supporter.”
Lockhart Steele, the editorial director for Vox Media, was fired, the company said, after he admitted to “engaging in conduct that is inconsistent with our core values.” Vox is also investigating claims made in a blog post by former employee Eden Rohatensky in which Rohatensky accuses multiple co-workers of sexual misconduct, and detailed one particular incident involving “one of the company’s VPs” while riding in the backseat of a cab with other co-workers. Rohatensky did not mention Vox or any co-workers by name in the post.
After getting fired a month later “due to lack of productivity,” Rohatensky reported what happened with the unnamed VP, but later learned that “his punishment was being told he could not drink at corporate events any longer.”
Vox has hired a law firm to look into the accusations, and Rohatensky has met with the investigators.