News World Director James Toback accused of sexually harassing 38 women

Director James Toback accused of sexually harassing 38 women

James Toback
Film director James Toback is the latest Hollywood VIP to face allegations of sexual harassment. Photo: Getty
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Hollywood has been rocked accusations that another influential movie industry player sexually harassed dozens of women over decades.

According to The Los Angeles Times, Hollywood Oscar-nominated writer and director James Toback has sexually harassed 38 women.

It alleges that Mr Toback approached both young and upcoming actresses, talking up his connections and access to big names in their encounters.

The meetings, sometimes billed as auditions, would often end with either questions of a personal or sexual nature or with Mr Toback masturbating in front of them, or dry-humping them, it stated.

Mr Toback has denied the allegations and said he had never met any of the women in question or, if he did, it “was for five minutes and have no recollection”, AP reports.

Who is James Toback?

While less known than producer Harvey Weinstein, Toback has had a four-decade long career in Hollywood.

He is best known for writing the 1991 film Bugsy — starring Hollywood stalwart Warren Beatty — which scored him an Oscar nomination.

James Toback
James Toback directed the 2008 documentary film Tyson, based on Mike Tyson’s tumultuous life. Photo: Getty

He has worked with several big Hollywood names through his writing and directing, including Mark Wahlberg (The Gambler), Robert Downey Jr and Molly Ringwald (The Pick-up Artist) and Harvey Keitel (Fingers).

He also directed the 2008 documentary Tyson about the life of former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson.

His latest film starring Sienna Miller and Alec Baldwin (The Private Life of a Modern Woman) debuted at the Venice Film Festival in September.

Who are the women who have made the allegations?

Of the 38 women who made the accusations, 31 spoke to the Times on the record.

They include actress Adrienne LaValley who alleged Toback rubbed himself against her, AP reports.

Echo Danon, who worked on Toback’s film Black and White, said he put his hands on her and said he would ejaculate if she looked at his eyes and pinched his nipples.

She said: “Everyone wants to work, so they put up with it.”

Veruca Salt guitarist and singer Louise Post and actress Terri Conn (As the World Turns) have also spoken out.

What’s the response been so far?

Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn has written a lengthy Facebook post on the allegations.

He said he knows at least 15 women who have had similar experiences, including a member of his family, and said he had been bringing up Toback’s name at every chance he could.

“I couldn’t stop him, but I could warn people about him,” he said.

“Recently, I thought the guy had disappeared into obscurity and old age, but then I saw an article in the Huffington Post about him, entitled, ‘James Toback Gets Us, He Truly Gets Us’. I almost vomited.

“… So since then I’ve been hoping the Weinstein/O’Reilly stuff would bring this vampire into the light [him and a couple others, frankly].

“So I was happy today to wake up to this story in the LA Times.”

Director Paul Fieg (Bridesmaids) also took to social media to share his thoughts.

And actress Rose McGowan, who has led the charge against Harvey Weinstein, tweeted her take.

– with agencies