Oscar-nominated writer and director James Toback has been accused of sexual harassment by 38 women. The women have said that he approached them on the streets of New York and promised stardom. They would then meet him, and he would ask them sexual questions. They reported that sometimes the 72-year-old director even masturbated in front of them.
Toback has denied all the allegations. But thirty-one women have spoken on record about being harassed by him. The list of women include, Louise Post, who is a guitarist and vocalist for the band Veruca Salt, and the As the World Turns actor Terri Conn.
During their encounters, Toback would name drop Hollowood stars and invite them to his hotel room to ‘start the process’ that would lead them to stardom.
Actor Echo Danon also recalls various incidents of sexual harassment at the hands of James Toback. She said that she wanted to work and so she put up with it.
Another well-known actress said that Toback had asked her to remove her clothes to display the sexual confidence the role required. When she said that she was uncomfortable, Toback said that was the point. And when she tried to leave, he didn’t let her, saying he needed to ejaculate.
I've been very vocal this week. I've been open about my experience over the years but no one(including my union) protected me. #jamestoback— Chantal Cousineau (@couz001) October 12, 2017
Toback is a Harvard graduate and is also a creative writing professor. The stories about him started unravelling after the #Metoo movement gained momentum. The social media movement started after producer Harvey Weinstein was accused of sexually harassing, and even raping women.
The director of Guardians of the Galaxy, James Gunn wrote a post about how he had met 15 women who said that they have had these encounters with him. “For over 20 years now, I’ve been bringing up James Toback every chance I could in groups of people,” Gunn wrote. “I couldn’t stop him, but I could warn people about him.”
Of course, Twitter is outraged by his actions. Here are some reactions from Hollywood’s top celebrities.
Long overdue for this well known sack of shit: https://t.co/WcULIz43zF— Anthony Bourdain (@Bourdain) October 22, 2017