'Supergirl,' 'Arrow' producer faces sex harassment allegations
Published Monday, November 13, 2017 5:57PM PST
Last Updated Tuesday, November 14, 2017 9:56AM PST
Sexual harassment scandals rocking the entertainment industry have come to Hollywood North, with an executive producer and co-creator of four high-profile TV shows filmed in Metro Vancouver suspended amid accusations of misconduct on the job.
Andrew Kreisberg, an executive producer of “Supergirl,” “Arrow,” “The Flash,” and “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” engaged in a pattern of sexual harassment, four men and 15 women told Variety Magazine.
“We have recently been made aware of allegations of misconduct,” Warner Bros. told CTV News in a statement. “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.”
The magazine detailed Kreisberg touching people without their permission, asking for massages from uncomfortable staff members and kissing women without asking.
Kreisberg has denied the reports, telling the magazine that “there never was any sexual intent or overtones” in his behaviour.
He appears to be the latest powerful man in entertainment to be swept up in the #MeToo movement, which is empowering women to relate shocking allegations that have been under wraps for years.
The star of Supergirl, Melissa Benoist, tweeted a statement apparently in reaction the allegations, but didn’t mention Kreisberg by name: “When people commit crimes or harass others they should always be held accountable, no matter what industry they work in or how much power they wield.”
“People outside of the industry or men in the industry are surprised,” said Lisa Ovies, an actress and director who also runs an acting school. “But people who have experienced this are not surprised. It’s more relieved that it’s coming out.”
Ovies said workers in film are more at risk because they have little job security and there is clear protocol for how harassment can be reported.
“We need to create a safe space for people to come and talk,” she said. “Right now in film we don’t have an HR department. We are told by our union to go to our employer, which is the studio. You go to the studio, you might never come back to work. We need actual guidelines to go through in order to handle these things.”
Ovies says she tells her students to be on the lookout for potential abuse at work, but that “no one person can ruin your career. You’ve got to stand up, you’ve got to be loud, and now all of a sudden things are coming to light there’s optimism that things are going to change.”
Actress Emily Bett Rickards also posted to Twitter, saying: “To the women who supported one another and to the women finding their voice: You can. You are the heroines.”
Editor's note: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that four women and 15 men claimed Andrew Kreisberg engaged in a pattern of sexual harassment. The claims were from 15 women and four men.