Warner Bros. severs ties with Brett Ratner after sexual misconduct allegations

Source: Xinhua| 2017-11-02 12:48:24|Editor: Liangyu
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LOS ANGELES, Nov. 1 (Xinhua) -- Warner Bros. has severed all ties with the "Rush Hour" director Brett Ratner after six women publicly accused him of a range of sexual misconduct.

The news comes on the same day when the high-profile film-maker responded to the numerous allegations of sexual harassment made against him in a recent Los Angeles Times report.

Six women, including actresses Olivia Munn and Natasha Henstridge, detailed their experiences with Ratner to the newspaper on Wednesday morning.

Ratner's attorney Martin Singer denied all of the accusations in a 10-page letter to the Los Angeles Times, writing "I have represented Mr. Ratner for two decades, and no woman has ever made a claim against him for sexual misconduct or sexual harassment."

Ratner is suing a woman for defamation after she accused him of sexual assault, Time Warner's celebrity news website TMZ reported on Wednesday.

In a statement, Ratner portrayed the choice to part ways with Warner Bros. as his own.

"In light of the allegations being made, I am choosing to personally step away from all Warner Bros.-related activities," he said in the statement. "I don't want to have any possible negative impact to the studio until these personal issues are resolved."

Warner Bros. was under pressure to act quickly. The studio will not renew any of Ratner's deals, including a 450-million-U.S.-dollar co-financing agreement and a first-look production deal.

Ratner will also lose his office space on the Warners lot in Burbank, California which will be reverted to the studio's control, local media reported.

For the last several years, Ratner has been an integral part of Warner Bros. movie-making machine.

Ratner, 48, started his career by directing music videos for singers like Madonna and Mairah Carey. He made a name for himself by spearheading the Rush Hour franchise. In recent years, he has built his career on production under his RatPac Entertainment.

Ratner is also partner in the RatPac-Dune Entertainment slate financing facility that covers many of the studio's tent-pole productions, such as The Lego Movie, Dunkirk and Steven Spielberg's upcoming Ready Player One.