Six women, including Olivia Munn, Natasha Henstridge, and Jaime Ray Newman, have accused director Brett Ratner of sexual misconduct.
An article published Wednesday by the Los Angeles Times detailed the various allegations levied against the 46-year-old Ratner, whose known for films such as Rush Hour, X-Men: The Last Stand, and Tower Heist.
Munn said Ratner masturbated in front of her while on set of the 2004 movie After the Sunset. He also allegedly boasted of ejaculating on magazine covers featuring her image. She said that false rumors of their relationship infuriated her and she was compelled to share her story after seeing other women come forward with their own stories of sexual assault and harassment in recent weeks.
Henstridge, known for roles in Species and The Whole Nine Yards, accused Ratner of forcing her to perform oral sex during a house party. Neman, who stars on Netflix’s The Punisher, said Ratner made unwanted advances and used sexually disparaging language while seated next to her on an airplane. Another actress named Eri Sasaki said Ratner propositioned her on the set of Rush Hour 2, asking her, “Don’t you want to be famous?”
Actress Katharine Towne, daughter of Chinatown screenwriter Robert Towne, said Ratner followed her into a bathroom during a house party. Towne said she attempted to stop his advances by making a joke about her weight, to which Ratner responded, “I like ’em chubby sometimes.” Towne said Ratner continued to harass her for the next six months, frequently calling her office in hopes of setting up a date.
In a statement to the Times, Ratner’s lawyer, Martin Singer, “categorically” denied all the allegations detailed in the article. “I have represented Mr. Ratner for two decades, and no woman has ever made a claim against him for sexual misconduct or sexual harassment,” Singer said. “Furthermore, no woman has ever requested or received any financial settlement from my client.
Specifically addressing Towne’s allegations, Singer questioned how “complimenting a woman on her appearance, and calling her to ask her for a date [was] wrongful conduct?”
Ratner is currently working on a Hugh Hefner biopic starring Jared Leto, which is to be distributed by Warner Bros. as part of a first-look deal with Ratner. In light of the allegations, Warner Bros. told the Times it was “reviewing the situation.” Update – 10:20 p.m.: Warner Bros. has severed ties with Ratner, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Additionally, the Hugh Hefner biopic has been canceled.
This is a developing story…