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Oprah Winfrey Pulls Out as Producer of Russell Simmons #MeToo Documentary

Oprah Winfrey Pulls Out as Producer of Russell Simmons #MeToo Documentary


Oprah Winfrey has pulled again from her deliberate Russell Simmons #MeToo documentary.

The media mogul, 65, was set to be an govt producer on the untitled movie, which is slated for a Sundance Movie Competition premiere later this month.

The documentary focuses on a former music govt who has accused Simmons of sexual misconduct and was supposed to air on Apple TV+. Simmons has vehemently denied all allegations towards him.

“I’ve determined that I’ll not be govt producer on The Untitled Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering Documentary and it’ll not air on Apple TV+,” Winfrey mentioned in a press release obtained by PEOPLE.

“Firstly, I need it to be recognized that I unequivocally imagine and assist the ladies Their tales should be instructed and heard. For my part, there’s extra work to be finished on the movie to light up the complete scope of what the victims endured and it has grow to be clear that the filmmakers and I will not be aligned in that artistic imaginative and prescient,” Winfrey continued. “Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering are gifted filmmakers. I’ve nice respect for his or her mission however given the filmmakers’ want to premiere the movie on the Sundance Movie Competition earlier than I imagine it’s full, I really feel it’s finest to step apart.”

She added, “I might be working with Time’s As much as assist the victims and people impacted by the abuse and sexual harassment.”

In a press release obtained by PEOPLE, Dick and Ziering mentioned, “Revealing onerous truths isn’t simple, and the ladies in our documentary are all exhibiting extraordinary energy and braveness by elevating their voices to deal with sexual abuse within the music business. Whereas we’re disillusioned that Oprah Winfrey is not an Government Producer on the mission, we’re gratified that Winfrey has unequivocally mentioned she believes and helps the survivors within the movie.”

They continued, “The #MeToo experiences of Black ladies should be heard, particularly towards highly effective males, so we’ll proceed with our plans to deliver the movie to The Sundance Movie Competition. This movie greater than two years within the making, might be our eighth to premiere at Sundance.”

“The movie is a beacon of hope for voices which have lengthy been suppressed, and an inspiration for anybody eager to regain their private energy,” they added.

RELATED: 18 Girls Accuse Music Producer Russell Simmons of Sexual Misconduct — Every little thing They’ve Stated

Tina Then, president and CEO of TIME’S UP Basis mentioned in a press release the group “is in full assist of the survivors who’ve spoken out about Russell Simmons. These ladies are courageous. We imagine them.”

“We assist Oprah Winfrey in sustaining that the victims’ tales should be heard on their very own phrases. Too typically, black ladies are silenced, disbelieved and even vilified after they converse out,” Then mentioned. “On prime of that, for yr, these ladies have been attacked by highly effective forces surrounding Russell Simmons – illustrating how troublesome it’s to talk out towards highly effective males. And the way essential it’s for highly effective males to be held accountable for his or her actions.”

She continued, “As Oprah made clear in her assertion, any determination by her and Apple relating to this documentary doesn’t change the underlying information. We assert TIME’S UP’s unwavering assist for these survivors. We’re in awe of their braveness and energy. We’ll proceed to battle for them, and we’ll proceed to battle for a future the place black ladies are actually heard and believed.”


View this put up on Instagram

Dearest OPRAH,you might have been a shining gentle to my household and my group. Contributing a lot to my life that I couldn’t record a fraction of it on this weblog.Ihave given you the present of meditation and the groundbreaking e-book”THE POWER OF NOW “we bonded to say the least. Because of this it’s so troubling that you simply select me to single out in your current documentry. I’ve already admitted to being a playboy extra (appropriately titled at present “womanizer”) sleeping with and placing myself in additional compromising conditions than virtually any man I do know. Not eight or 14 thousand like Warren Beatty or Wilt Chamberlain, however nonetheless an embarrassing quantity. So many who some might reinterpret or reimagine a special recollection of the identical experiences. Please observe that ur producers mentioned that this upcoming doc was to focus ONLY on Three hand chosen ladies. I’ve refused to get within the mud with any accusers, however let’s acknowledge what i’ve shared. I’ve taken and handed 9 3-hour lie detector assessments (taken for my daughters), that these tales have been handed on by CNN, NBC, BUZZFEED, NY POST, NY MAG, AND OTHERS. Now that you’ve reviewed the information and also you SHOULD have realized what I do know; that these tales are UNUSABLE and that “harm folks harm folks”. At present I acquired a name from an outdated girlfriend from the early 1980s which signifies that they’re utilizing my phrases/proof towards me and their COMMITMENT/ (the entire claims are 25 to 40 years outdated) It’s not possible to show what occurred 40 years in the past, however in my case proof exists of what didn’t occur, principally signed letters from their very own dad and mom, siblings, roommates, band members, interns, and within the case of two of your Three accusers,their very own phrases of their books. Surprising how many individuals have misused this essential highly effective revolution for relevance and cash. … In closing, I’m responsible of exploiting, supporting, and making the soundtrack for a grossly unequal society, however i’ve by no means been violent or compelled myself on anybody. Nonetheless I’m right here to assist assist a vital shift in energy and consciousness. Allow us to get to work on uplifting humanity and put this second and outdated narrative behind us

A put up shared by Russell Simmons (@unclerush) on Dec 13, 2019 at 6:35am PST

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Simmons made his emotions in regards to the documentary recognized on social media in December when he shared a photograph of himself and Winfrey from a earlier Tremendous Soul Sunday session wherein he was a visitor.

“Dearest OPRAH,you might have been a shining gentle to my household and my group. Contributing a lot to my life that I couldn’t record a fraction of it on this weblog.Ihave given you the present of meditation and the groundbreaking e-book”THE POWER OF NOW “we bonded to say the least,” Simmons started. “Because of this it’s so troubling that you simply select me to single out in your current documentry. I’ve already admitted to being a playboy extra (appropriately titled at present “womanizer”) sleeping with and placing myself in additional compromising conditions than virtually any man I do know. Not eight or 14 thousand like Warren Beatty or Wilt Chamberlain, however nonetheless an embarrassing quantity. So many who some might reinterpret or reimagine a special recollection of the identical experiences.”

He continued, “Please observe that ur producers mentioned that this upcoming doc was to focus ONLY on Three hand chosen ladies. I’ve refused to get within the mud with any accusers, however let’s acknowledge what i’ve shared. I’ve taken and handed 9 3-hour lie detector assessments (taken for my daughters), that these tales have been handed on by CNN, NBC, BUZZFEED, NY POST, NY MAG, AND OTHERS.”

RELATED VIDEO: Russell Simmons Steps Down From Enterprise Empire Following New Sexual Assault Allegation: Report

“Now that you’ve reviewed the information and also you SHOULD have realized what I do know; that these tales are UNUSABLE and that “harm folks harm folks”. At present I acquired a name from an outdated girlfriend from the early 1980s which signifies that they’re utilizing my phrases/proof towards me and their COMMITMENT/ (the entire claims are 25 to 40 years outdated) It’s not possible to show what occurred 40 years in the past, however in my case proof exists of what didn’t occur, principally signed letters from their very own dad and mom, siblings, roommates, band members, interns, and within the case of two of your Three accusers,their very own phrases of their books. Surprising how many individuals have misused this essential highly effective revolution for relevance and cash.”

Simmons denied the allegations that he had “compelled” himself on ladies in his put up, writing, “… In closing, I’m responsible of exploiting, supporting, and making the soundtrack for a grossly unequal society, however i’ve by no means been violent or compelled myself on anybody. Nonetheless I’m right here to assist assist a vital shift in energy and consciousness. Allow us to get to work on uplifting humanity and put this second and outdated narrative behind us.”

A number of ladies have accused the music producer of sexual misconduct together with Drew Dixon, who’s the topic of the documentary and one of many first ladies to come back ahead with accusations towards Simmons.

In 2017, Dixon instructed The New York Occasions she was working her “dream job” as an govt at Def Jam Recordings in 1995 however allegedly handled “extended and aggressive sexual harassment” by Simmons, who co-founded the label.

In accordance with Dixon, Simmons made sexual feedback about her and requested her to sit down on his lap throughout a employees assembly, along with usually exposing his erect penis to her.

Dixon alleges his conduct culminated in rape sooner or later in his Manhattan condo. “I used to be damaged,” she instructed the Occasions, including that Simmons allegedly pinned her to his mattress and she or he later wakened bare in his sizzling tub after blacking out regardless of not having any alcohol.