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Setback for #MeToo as prosecutors rule James Toback sex accusations too old

The reason is one of legal complication rather than exoneration: the allegations fall outside the st..

The reason is one of legal complication rather than exoneration: the allegations fall outside the statute of limitations, the legal line in the sand which effectively places a cap on the time period in which a charge can be made after an offence is alleged to have occurred.

Given the media attention that was placed on the Toback accusations in the wake of the Weinstein scandal, the decision is not just bruising to the #MeToo movement, but also a dramatic illustration of the difficulty an accuser has of seeing his or her day in court.

The three cases investigated by the Beverly Hills Police Department related to incidents in which Toback was alleged to rubbed up against women and masturbated.

In two of the three cases – one incident at the Beverly Hills Hotel in 1993 and a second at a private screening in 2008 – the District Attorney's office found that Toback may have committed sexual battery but that the one-year statute of limitation had expired.

In the third case, which related to a separate incident in 2008, the woman involved would not agree to be interviewed by detectives.

The two cases investigated by the Los Angeles Police Department related to incidents in 1978 and 1980 where Toback was alleged to have exposed himself or groped the victim.

In both of those cases the statute of limitation had also expired, the District Attorney's office confirmed.

Though the Harvey Weinstein case commanded the lion's share of the headlines as a wave of accusations of sexual harassment and sexual assault swept Hollywood last year, Toback's case was notable for the volume of his accusers.

The story was initially broken by The Los Angeles Times' reporter Glenn Whipp with an investigation that included accounts from 38 women.

Publication of the story prompted scores more women to come forward and contact the newspaper; the final total was as many as 395.

Thank you to all the women who told me their stories about James Toback with such strength, candor and courage. https://t.co/BNOr0r6MIK

— Glenn Whipp (@GlennWhipp) January 7, 2018

They included high-profile actresses inculding Rachel McAdams, Ellen Pompeo, Selma Blair and Julianne Moore who spoke publicly of Toback's behaviour.

Both Blair and McAdams, for example, gave accounts which echoed the broader narrative: that Toback would flatter their acting talent, offer them a role in his films and invite them to his hotel room.

Here's a post-it James Toback gave me on the street, by Times Square, September 25, 1986. He said he wanted to meet me at the Harvard Club and wrote down the address and time. I didn't go. This was his third time accosting me on street in two years pic.twitter.com/rGr0tFwI0Z

— Victoria Balfour (@VickiBalfour) October 17, 2017

The damn has broke. Women will no longer be silent. We have your back and will amplify. https://t.co/hXt7J2UzXR

— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) October 22, 2017

To the growing number of accounts, US Today presenter Natalie Morales added her name, writing on her social media account: "… add one more. Exact same playbook by James Toback when I encountered him near Central Park."

Among the Hollywood heavyweights to denounce Toback in the wake of the accusations was Guardians of the Galaxy writer-director James Gunn.

Why Ive despised James Toback for over 20 years #JamesTobackhttps://t.co/0dhRub1EdX

— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) October 22, 2017

Toback was not disciplined by either the Directors Guild of America or the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as he has not been a member of either organisation for more than a decade.

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Michael Idato

Michael Idato is a Senior Writer based in Los Angeles for The Sydney Morning Herald.

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007 film must treat Bond girls properly, says Waller-Bridge

Fast cars, martinis and Bond girls are core parts of the formula for 007 films, but one of those ele..

Fast cars, martinis and Bond girls are core parts of the formula for 007 films, but one of those elements is set for a change in the latest adventure.

Fleabag creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who is working on the script for the 25th Bond film, is on a mission to make sure the movie will "treat women properly" – even if the spy does not.

Image: Cast members (l-r): Lea Seydoux, Ana de Armas, Naomie Harris and Lashana Lynch at the launch of the new Bond film

Ahead of the release of the as-yet-untitled film, Waller-Bridge told Deadline: "There's been a lot of talk about whether or not (the Bond franchise) is relevant now because of who he is and the way he treats women.

"I think that's b*******. I think he's absolutely relevant now. It has just got to grow.

"It has just got to evolve, and the important thing is that the film treats the women properly.

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"He doesn't have to. He needs to be true to this character."

Sean Connery and Mie Hama in You Only Live Twice, 1967
Image: The Bond films have been criticised for their sexism
Dr No turned Sean Connery into an international superstar
Image: Dr No featured the famous scene with Ursula Andress walking out of the sea in a white bikini

Waller-Bridge says she intends to ensure the female characters, including those played by Lashana Lynch, Lea Seydoux and Ana de Armas, feel "like real people ".

More from Phoebe Waller-bridge

She added: "I just want to make sure that when they get those pages through, that Lashana, Lea and Ana open them and go, 'I can't wait to do that'.

"As an actrRead More – Source (more…)

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Sir Elton hits out at Russia for ‘cruel’ Rocketman censorship

Sir Elton John has criticised Russian censors for cutting gay sex scenes from the hit musical biopic..

Sir Elton John has criticised Russian censors for cutting gay sex scenes from the hit musical biopic Rocketman.

The critically acclaimed film charts the British singer's rise to fame, and its scenes of kissing and sex between men, as well as drug use, contributed to it earning a 15 certificate in the UK.

But in a bid to play down the sexuality of Sir Elton, played by actor Taron Egerton, for a conservative Russian audience, an estimated five minutes of footage was reportedly removed ahead of its debut in Moscow.

Taron Egerton on Sir Elton: 'I adore him'

The Moscow Times quoted a Russian film critic who had seen the film at its world premiere in Cannes on 16 May as saying "all scenes with kissing, sex and oral sex between men have been cut", as well as a photo displayed during the end credits featuring Sir Elton and his husband David Furnish.

Sir Elton, 72, a prominent gay rights campaigner, released a joint statement with the makers of the film to accuse censors of being "cruelly unaccepting of the love between two people".

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"We reject in the strongest possible terms the decision to pander to local laws and censor Rocketman for the Russian market, a move we were unaware of until today," they said.

"That the local distributor has edited out certain scenes, denying the audience the opportunity to see the film as it was intended, is a sad reflection of the divided world we still live in and how it can still be so cruelly unaccepting of the love between two people.

More from Elton John

"We believe in building bridges and open dialogue, and will continue to pushRead More – Source

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Ben Affleck steps out to drop off kids as Robert Pattinson is announced as new Batman

Ben Affleck played Batman until earlier this year (Picture: Backgrid)
Ben Affleck has been pictured ..

Ben Affleck played Batman until earlier this year (Picture: Backgrid)

Ben Affleck has been pictured performing his parental duties in Los Angeles, as his official replacement in the Batman role is announced.

The 46-year-old actor was seen in the early hours on Friday (31 May) dropping off son Samuel, seven, and daughter Seraphina, 10, to school.

Affleck has three children with ex-wife Jennifer Garner – Seraphina, Samuel and 13-year-old Violet.

On the same day the actor was pictured, it was announced Robert Pattinson will take over as Batman in a planned trilogy of movies with director Matt Reeves.

Brentwood, CA - Ben Affleck was on daddy duty this morning in Brentwood ahead of the weekend. Pictured: Ben Affleck, Seraphina Rose Elizabeth Affleck, Samuel Garner Affleck BACKGRID USA 31 MAY 2019 BYLINE MUST READ: Boaz / BACKGRID USA: +1 310 798 9111 / usasales@backgrid.com UK: +44 208 344 2007 / uksales@backgrid.com *UK Clients - Pictures Containing Children Please Pixelate Face Prior To Publication*
Ben Affleck was on parent duties (Picture: Backgrid)

Affleck, who played Bruce Wayne in Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice and 2017s Justice League, stepped down from the role in January earlier this year – after being originally down to direct and star in his own film.

More: Ben Affleck

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Speaking about his departure in March, Affleck stated how he was never happy with the script they were planning to use.

Brentwood, CA - Ben Affleck was on daddy duty this morning in Brentwood ahead of the weekend. Pictured: Ben Affleck BACKGRID USA 31 MAY 2019 BYLINE MUST READ: Boaz / BACKGRID USA: +1 310 798 9111 / usasales@backgrid.com UK: +44 208 344 2007 / uksales@backgrid.com *UK Clients - Pictures Containing Children Please Pixelate Face Prior To Publication*
Ben Affleck has a number of roles in the pipeline (Picture: Backgrid)
Brentwood, CA - Ben Affleck was on daddy duty this morning in Brentwood ahead of the weekend. Pictured: Ben Affleck, Seraphina Rose Elizabeth Affleck, Samuel Garner Affleck BACKGRID USA 31 MAY 2019 BYLINE MUST READ: Boaz / BACKGRID USA: +1 310 798 9111 / usasales@backgrid.com UK: +44 208 344 2007 / uksales@backgrid.com *UK Clients - Pictures Containing Children Please Pixelate Face Prior To Publication*
Ben Affleck with son Samuel and daughter Seraphina (Picture: Backgrid)

We worked on the script, I was trying to figure out how to cRead More – Source

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