Warner Bros cuts ties with Brett Ratner, who faces sexual harassment allegations from six women

Agencies

Nov,02 2017 10:20:31 IST

Hollywood’s widening sexual harassment crisis has ensnared a prominent film director after six women — including actress Olivia Munn — accused Brett Ratner of sexual misconduct in a Los Angeles Times report on 1 November.

Brett Ratner. Getty Images/Michael Tran.

Brett Ratner. Getty Images/Michael Tran.

Playboy Enterprises quickly distanced itself from Ratner as his attorney denied the allegations and on 1 November Warner Bros. severed ties with the director, whose expired first-look deal with the studio will not be renewed, according to a person with knowledge of the decision who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

Munn also complained about on-set behavior, alleging that while visiting the production of Ratner’s After the Sunset in 2004, he masturbated in front of her in his trailer. Munn described the incident, without naming Ratner, in a 2010 collection of essays.

Ratner’s lawyer issued a statement in which he said the director “vehemently denies the outrageous derogatory allegations” and is “confident that his name will be cleared once the current media frenzy dies down and people can objectively evaluate the nature of these claims.”

In the latest development, Brett Ratner has sued a woman named Melanie Kohler, who claims he raped her in Los Angeles over a decade ago. He says it's a lie. Ratner is suing Kohler for defamation, claiming unspecified damages, reports tmz.com.

According to the lawsuit, Kohler claimed in an 20 October Facebook post, "Brett Ratner raped me". She even called him "a rapist on at least one night in Hollywood about 12 years ago".

Kohler said Ratner "preyed on me as a drunk girl (and) forced himself upon me".

According to Ratner's lawyer, Kohler said she had met the filmmaker at a club here in either 2004 or 2005, and he took her to producer Robert Evans's home where Ratner was living at the time. She says he forced her to have sex. Ratner's lawyer threatened to sue her if she didn't take the post down immediately. She removed the post, but Kohler again started putting the same story out in various ways.

Ratner directed the Rush Hour film series, Red Dragon, X-Men: The Last Stand and Tower Heist.

Updated Date: Nov 02, 2017 14:44 PM