James Toback Accused Of Sexual Harassment
Oscar-nominated director James Toback has been accused of sexual harassment by 38 women, according to a report in the US.
In an expose published by the Los Angeles Times, several women have claimed that the accomplished writer, director and producer approached them on the street and invited them to auditions, promising stardom.
Many of the women gave similar accounts, the paper reports, saying the meetings would end with sexual questions and Toback performing sex acts in front of them.
Toback has reportedly denied the allegations, citing “heart conditions and diabetes” as the cause for not being able to partake in such prolific sexual activities.
Sky News has contacted his representative but is yet to receive an official statement.
The allegations against Toback come in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal which has seen dozens of women sharing alleged experiences of sexual harassment and sexual assault by the Hollywood producer.
Through his lawyers, Weinstein has “unequivocally” denied allegations of non-consensual sex.
Soon after the claims against the producer emerged, the Twitter hashtag #MeToo was created, encouraging women across the world to share their own harassment experiences with other powerful men.
This led to allegations against Toback.
“I have my own story about James Toback from when I was 18. It was vile & disgusting. He was around 50 at the time,” one user wrote.
“If you were involved in the film business in the ’90s you knew that Harvey Weinstein was a sexual predator. Another one was James Toback,” wrote another.
Actress Rose McGowan, who has accused Weinstein of rape, tweeted on Sunday: “James Toback damn you for stealing, damn you for traumatizing”.
A creative writing professor and compulsive gambler, Toback used his own life as inspiration for his first produced screenplay, The Gambler, which came out in 1974 starring James Caan.
The film was remade in 2014 with Mark Wahlberg and Brie Larson.
Toback was also nominated for an Oscar for writing the Barry Levinson-directed Bugsy, starring Warren Beatty.
Allegations against the 72-year-old writer are not new. In 1989, Spy magazine wrote an account of several women who claimed they had experienced unwanted sexual encounters with him.
Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson also wrote on Twitter: “If there is a Hell, James Toback will be in it”, while Ghostbusters director Paul Feig said: “One of the main jobs of a director is to create a safe environment for the actors. James Toback is a disgrace.”