38 women accuse James Toback of sexual harassment

Tyson director denies claims

by Jennie Kermode

James Toback
James Toback Photo: Bobak Ha'Eri

James Toback, director of Tyson and Black And White, has been accused of sexual harassment by 38 women, according to an article in yesterday's Los Angeles Times. The claims are remarkably similar in nature and allege that the director approached women in New York, persuaded them to accompany him to secluded places for auditions, then asked them explicit sexual questions and proceeded to masturbate in front of them.

Toback, 72, denies all the claims, saying that he doesn't remember meeting any of the women. He asserted that health issues would have made it impossible for him to behave as described.

Toback was proud of his flirtatiousness and titled a film based on his own life The Pick-Up Artist. He also directed 2013 documentary Seduced And Abandoned, which sets out to expose the way films are made and is rife with casual sexism, including a deeply uncomfortable audition scene with Jessica Chastain.

Asia Argento, who is among the women who recently made claims against Harvey Weinstein, has tweeted that her friend Echo Danon was attacked by Toback. Radio host Sari Kamin wrote that he repeatedly harassed her when she was in her twenties. James Gunn claimed on Facebook that several of his friends and two of his former girlfriends had also been harassed by Toback.

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