Sign in / Join

James Toback accused of sexual harassment

James Toback used the same techniques to get a girls attention; he would usually go for young women in their early 20's or college students, sometimes even on high schoolers, and, would approach the girl by telling them who he was. If they didn't know who he was, he would start dropping famous movies or actors names in hope they would recognize him.

First, he would get them to trust him, and that's when an audition would turn into something else, according to 38 women who had similar encounters with Toback. During those meetings, women said Toback will make sexual requests. He would also make uncomfortable personal questions like, "How often do you masturbate?"

The encounters often ended, according to the many women interviewed, with Toback dry-humping them or masturbating in front of them, ejaculating into his pants or onto their bodies.

The women's statements portray Toback as a man that, for decades, sexually harassed women he hired, women looking for work and women he just saw on the street. None of the women contacted the police at the time.

When Toback was contacted by The Times, Toback denied the allegations, saying he had never met the women.

He also repeatedly claimed that for the last 22 years it had been "biologically impossible" for him to engage in the behavior described by the women. He said he had diabetes and a heart condition that required medication.

Within two days from the story released by The Times, numbers swelled to include over 200 additional women.  Since then, even more women have spoken up. Through phone calls and emails, they recalled encounters with Toback similar to those detailed in the story.

"I'm glad more women are coming foward and not being afraid anymore," said Bowie High School student, Sergio Enriquez.

According to LAPD Det. Danetta Menifee, the Los Angeles Police Department has fielded numerous phone calls related to Toback in the last few days. Several women included in The Times investigation confirmed they had contacted the district attorneys office in the past week to file complaints.

Meanwhile, Toback's longtime agent, Jeff Berg, terminated his relationship with the filmmaker over the weekend, according to a spokesperson for Berg's Los Angeles firm.

Writer- director James Gunn posted a Facebook post on Oct 22. 2017, in which he declared he had been warning about Toback's sexual come-ons for years.

Toback's accusers also say that he exploited women who wanted to break into Hollywood, telling them that sexual harassment is to be expected. Many of the women interviewed by Whipp (writer of The Times) turned to other careers after their experiences with Toback,

"This is crazy: how women have to deal with this just to get a job," said college student Diana Casas.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email