CBS CEO Les Moonves Accused of Sexual Misconduct in New Yorker Exposé

30 July, 2018, 04:57 | Author: Miranda Cannon
  • David Becker  Getty Images for Showtime

But The Hollywood Reporter foreshadowed the Farrow report in an item of its own Friday morning.

Then president of entertainment at CBS, Moonves called a private meeting to discuss her rehearsal, she told the New Yorker, and proceeded to pin her down on a couch and began "violently kissing" her, she says.

He said that he never misused his position to harm or hinder anyone's career.

The allegations against Moonves surfaced as he is locked in a legal battle over control of CBS with the company's largest shareholder, National Amusements Inc, owned by Shari Redstone and her father Sumner who also control media company Viacom (VIAB.O).

A spokesperson for Redstone said she was not involved in the surfacing of allegations against Moonves.

CBS told the New Yorker that Moonves acknowledges trying to kiss Douglas, but that "he denies any characterization of 'sexual assault, ' intimidation, or retaliatory action".

Sexual misconduct allegations against CBS Corp.'s chairman and chief executive officer complicate an already messy situation for the broadcaster: Its board will have to investigate Moonves at the same time it's working with him in a court fight for control of the most-watched US TV network.

The CBS board's independent directors on Friday said in a statement released several hours before The New Yorker article was published that the board will review the claims.

CBS Corp.'s stock fell 6 percent — its worst one-day loss in almost seven years — as the reports of the misconduct allegations began to circulate around noon Friday, triggering investor concerns Moonves might be forced to step down. He is CBS Corporation's CEO and Chairman of the Board.


Independent members of CBS's board have pledged an investigation into the CEO's behaviour.

Moonves has been one of the most celebrated and well-respected executives in the television industry.

The New Yorker declined to comment, citing its policy of not commenting on reporting efforts before publication. CBS' stock price (NYSE: CBS) plunged 6%, closing at $54.01. "Along with that team, we will continue to focus on creating value for our shareowners".

In a statement issued Friday afternoon, a representative for Shari Redstone said, "The malicious insinuation that Ms. Redstone is somehow behind the allegations of inappropriate personal behavior by Mr. Moonves or today's reports is false and self-serving".

Redstone said through a spokeswoman Friday that she hopes the investigation into sexual misconduct will be "thorough, open and transparent".

Moonves has been a singular presence at CBS for decades.

He revived the company, which operates the CBS network, Showtime and other entities, with hit shows like "NCIS" and "The Big Bang Theory". It narrowly retained its ratings crown in the 2017-18 season that ended in May.

Moonves joined CBS in 1995 and has been married to TV personality Julie Chen since 2004. The couple, who Wednesday in late 2004, have one son, Charlie, 8. He has always been a kind, decent and moral human being. "I fully support my husband and stand behind him and his statement", her statement reads in full. They have three adult children. Television, where his team developed hit shows such as "Friends" and "ER".

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