Warner Bros. TV has suspended The Flash, Supergirl, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow producer Andrew Kreisberg, and launched an investigation into claims of sexual harassment. Ever since The New York Times piece detailing accounts of sexual harassment and abuse committed by Harvey Weinstein, the floodgates have opened, and more and more survivors have come forward with their own stories of predatory behavior in Hollywood (and other industries). Star Trek: Discovery actor Anthony Rapp spoke out against Kevin Spacey, while more recently, Louis C.K. was accused of sexual misconduct, which he confirmed in his own statement - but these are just two instances of many over recent weeks.
In each case, the fallout from the accusations has been different, but there's been one common denominator - those accused of sexual harassment or assault have faced consequences for their actions, even if those consequences aren't of the legal nature. Weinstein was fired from his company and expelled from the Academy, Spacey was fired from House of Cards by Netflix and will be replaced through reshoots of Ridley Scott's All the Money in the World, and C.K. was dropped by HBO, Netflix, FX, and the upcoming Universal and Illumination sequel, The Secret Life of Pets 2. Now, Warner Bros. is investigating a new round of sexual harassment claims.
Variety is reporting that Warner Bros. TV Group has suspended Kreisberg and launched an investigation into allegations of inappropriate behavior. A total of 19 sources spoke to Variety, including 15 women and four men, all of whom have worked with the producer - who allege Kreisberg has engaged in sexually harassing behavior and inappropriate physical contact over the years. Warner Bros. TV Group released a statement concerning their investigation:
We have recently been made aware of allegations of misconduct against Andrew Kreisberg. We have suspended Mr. Kreisberg and are conducting an internal investigation. We take all allegations of misconduct extremely seriously, and are committed to creating a safe working environment for our employees and everyone involved in our productions.
Greg Berlanti and Sarah Schechter, who run Berlanti Productions, the company that oversees Kreisberg's shows, released their own statement in regards to these accusations:
We were recently made aware of some deeply troubling allegations regarding one of our showrunners. We have been encouraging and fully cooperating with the investigation into this by Warner Bros. There is nothing more important to us than the safety and well-being of our cast, crew, writers, producers and any staff. We do not tolerate harassment and are committed to doing everything we can to make an environment that’s safe to work in and safe to speak up about if it isn’t.
According to Variety's sources, Kreisberg frequently touched people without permission, asked for massages from uncomfortable female staffers, and kissed women without consent. He additionally is accused by almost every source of constantly making sexualized comments about "women's appearances, their clothes, and their perceived desirability." None of Variety's sources, all of whom wished to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, reported Kreisberg to Warner Bros. human resources as they assumed they would suffer worse consequences than the producer given his status within the company.
Many women who spoke to Variety noted that the environment Kreisberg fostered was "hostile" and "toxic" to the point that some said they felt unsafe on set. A male writer on one of Kreisberg's CW shows said he tried to talk to the producer about his behavior, but "it had no impact." According to a number of Variety's sources, Kreisberg's behavior worsened after he was given significantly more power as an executive producer on multiple shows (he serves as such on Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow). One male writer said, "The power went to his head. It became clear to me that it would be very dangerous, career-wise, for me to confront him about his behavior."
Kreisberg responded to the allegations against him, denying that anyone ever told him he should stop making sexually harassing remarks to and/or about women, as well as insisting his actions on set were not of a sexual nature:
I have made comments on women’s appearances and clothes in my capacity as an executive producer, but they were not sexualized. Like many people, I have given someone a non-sexual hug or kiss on the cheek. … I have proudly mentored both male and female colleagues for many years. But never in what I believe to be an unwanted way and certainly never in a sexual way.
As of now, it remains to be seen what will come of Warner Bros' investigation into these claims, whether Kreisberg will be reinstated within the company or let go. If he were to be let go from Warner Bros., he would be another figure in Hollywood accused of sexual harassment and misconduct to face consequences for their actions.
In terms of the series on which Kreisberg serves, it's unclear if his suspension will affect their current seasons or not, but with highly qualified and talented teams behind the scenes of Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow, they'll no doubt be able to keep production on the series moving forward. Now, many will look to Warner Bros. to see what will come of these allegations against Kreisberg surfacing.
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