Film Academy president John Bailey is arming himself with top legal firepower to defend him over harassment claims, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Attorney David Schindler, a Los Angeles-based partner at Latham & Watkins who formerly co-chaired the firm’s white collar defense and civil litigation practice, has been enlisted by Bailey as the Academy reviews allegations leveled last week at the executive. Schindler declined to comment.
An Academy subcommittee led by casting director David Rubin began a review on March 14 of harassment claims against Bailey, the Oscars organization’s elected leader. No details were disclosed about the nature of the allegations, and Bailey has not spoken publicly about the claims as the investigation unfolds.
The Academy also has declined to detail the nature of the claims beyond a statement. “The Academy treats any complaints confidentially to protect all parties,” the organization said March 16 in response to reports by THR and other media outlets on the investigation. “The Membership Committee reviews all complaints brought against Academy members according to our Standards of Conduct process, and after completing reviews, reports to the Board of Governors. We will not comment further on such matters until the full review is completed.”
Bailey, 75, was elected by the Academy on Aug. 8 of last year, succeeding Cheryl Boone Isaacs. Previously he had represented the cinematographers branch of the organization for more than a decade. As a cinematographer, his credits include Ordinary People (1980) and The Big Chill (1983), among many other titles. His wife, Oscar-nominated film editor Carol Littleton, is on the Academy’s Board of Governors, representing the editors branch.
This year’s Oscars telecast on March 4 carved out a segment called “New Voices,” where Ashley Judd, Salma Hayek and Annabella Sciorra spoke onstage addressing the wave of claims that have swept across Hollywood since October, when Harvey Weinstein was first accused of harassment and assault. (Weinstein was ousted from the Film Academy on Oct. 14.)
Bill Maher Defends Kavanaugh
On his show Friday night, Bill Maher and his panel got into a heated debate over the “new” allegations about Brett Kavanaugh – yes, the ones even his accuser can’t remember. Maher even turned on his liberal comrades, adopting the position that rehashing events from when Kavanaugh was 17 years old hurt the Democrats in 2018… and could hurt them again.
Citing polling from 2018, Maher said that Democrats could have done better in the midterm elections had it not been for the Kavanaugh hearings: “People did not like going after a guy for what he did in high school. It looked bad and now Democrats are talking about impeaching him again?” Maher said.
Guest Andrew Sullivan seemed to agree. “He probably did some shitty things in high school drunk,” he said.
And when liberal guest Heather McGhee tried to jump in, asking “May the woman please speak about what this felt like?”, Sullivan shot her down immediately: “Please don’t play that card. You’re making my point.”
When Kavanaugh’s temperament was brought up, Sullivan responded: “You try maintaining a good temperament when you’re being accused of something, you had no idea it was coming at you, came at the last minute, and that happened years and years and years ago.”
As McGhee tried to make the point that being a Supreme Court justice isn’t just a “normal job”, Maher immediately fired back: “So you’re saying at 17 you have to have your fully formed character?”
He continued: “Live in reality, man! That’s who they put up. We don’t have the votes, and now we lost seats! Are we gonna do it again? Ruth Bader Ginsburg said glowing things about him… What were you like at 17?”
Comedian Owen Benjamin Banned From Buford, Georgia Community Center
Owen Benjamin, a long-time Comedian and proud Christian, featured in several times in both Comedy Central Specials and Jay Leno, as well as several Movies and TV-Shows such as Sullivan & Son and ‘The House Bunny’, has been banned from a tax payer funded community center in Buford, Georgia after attempting to use the venue for an upcoming tour.
The venue is notable as one he has previously performed at and was asked to come back to. This came as a surprise to Owen as Georgia is a notably ‘conservative’ state. Currently he does have a show lined up in Portland with more shows coming by the day.
Kanye’s Red Pill Wave Among Celebrities Is Scaring Leftists
If there’s one thing that scares the establishment more than pop culture figures like Kanye becoming outspoken supporters of Trump and free expression in general, it’s that trend catching on to other pop culture figures. There’s one thing Trump couldn’t by himself and that was to get the mainstream entertainment & music industry on his side, considering many of their allegiances are with the Democratic party. Kanye West’s no apologetic approach is not only inspiring to those being attacked for “freedom of speech / thought” but also is getting him publicity, good & bad, depending on your perspective.
Observer Reports: As corporate progressivism vies against Trumpian nationalism for the future of America’s Empire, celebrities are inciting their own upheaval within Hollywood.
American Psycho author Bret Easton Ellis warned for years of an impending shift against progressive values in a town long touted as a bastion of liberalism. Following Kanye West’s controversial break with liberalism over Twitter and TMZ, Ellis is seeing his premonition unfold.
“I don’t know if Kanye was red pilled exactly,” said Ellis, referencing how individuals are converted to conservatism online similar to Neo’s awakening in the Matrix. “Kanye does not do this in a systematic or literal way: it’s sweeping, metaphorical and inchoate and in the age of digital literal-mindedness.”
In the age of digital literal-mindedness, Ellis and West, who were reported to be collaborating on a film together during the Obama years, became contrarian thinkers of the entertainment industry by flirting on the edges of the Overton window—the range of topics and viewpoints widely viewed as socially acceptable.