Producer Andrew Kreisberg, who works on The CW's Arrowverse shows, including The Flash, Arrow, Supergirl and Legends of Tomorrow, has been suspended by Warner Bros. over sexual misconduct claims. According to a new report, more than 15 women and four men who have worked with Kreisberg have come forward with stories of ongoing harassment in the workplace. Warner Bros. TV Group had this to say in a statement in regards to Kreisberg's suspension.
"We have recently been made aware of allegations of misconduct against Andrew Kreisberg. 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."
None of the sources wished to be named, but the claims being presented are wide-ranging and substantial. Andrew Kreisberg is said to have frequently touched women without their permission, kissed women who didn't ask and request messages from "uncomfortable" female staff members, among other things. Greg Berlanti and Sarah Schechter, who head Berlanti Productions, the company that oversees the Arrowverse shows for the CW, had this to say in a statement.
"We were recently made aware of some deeply troubling allegations regarding one of our showrunners. We have been encouraging and fully cooperating with the investigation into this by Warner Bros. There is nothing more important to us than the safety and well-being of our cast, crew, writers, producers and any staff. We do not tolerate harassment and are committed to doing everything we can to make an environment that's safe to work in and safe to speak up about if it isn't."
The environment that Andrew Kreisberg created is said to be "toxic" and female employees reportedly would leave the room when he would come in. None of those who spoke out for this report went to HR, because it seems like "nothing's being enforced," said one of the sources. Kreisberg denies any sexual misconduct, but admits to commenting on women's appearances and giving "kisses on the cheek," while also saying he's a mentor to both male and female's he works with.
"I have made comments on women's appearances and clothes in my capacity as an executive producer, but they were not sexualized. Like many people, I have given someone a non-sexual hug or kiss on the cheek. I have proudly mentored both male and female colleagues for many years. But never in what I believe to be an unwanted way and certainly never in a sexual way."
One of the male writers who worked for one of The CW Shows says, "It was an environment in which women, assistants, writers, executives, directors, were all evaluated based on their bodies, not on their work." For example, one male staffer recalls being asked to join Kreisberg in his office to watch a topless video of an actress who was being considered for a job. Kreisberg doesn't deny the claim, but says the video wasn't "X-rated."
"In doing research on the internet about a prospective actress, we found that she had a role in a premium cable network show. It was not a X-rated show. We clicked on the video and she was topless."
One woman was said to be the producer's "obsessive crush" and eventually left over the unwanted attention. Sources say that they feel the power went to Andrew Kreisberg head, which led to this pattern of misbehavior. Unfortunately, even though some women tried to report the incidents, the situation didn't change any. That is, until his recent suspension.
"There was zero response. Nothing happened. Nothing changed."
This suspension is certainly in response to the outpouring of claims from men and women in Hollywood in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal. There's an immense amount of pressure for companies to sever ties with anyone associated with sexual misconduct. Recently, Louis C.K. was fired from practically every job he has in Hollywood after five women came forward to claim he had harassed them. Claims which the comedian admitted to.
Andrew Kreisberg doesn't deny paying extra attention to younger staffers, saying, "as a mentor, yes, to both men and women. In a sexual way, no." Vareity's report notes that, for now, this is only a suspension. However, given the sheer volume of claims made against Kreisberg, it's hard to imagine Warner Bros. and The CW continuing that working relationship moving forward. Just as Netflix severed ties with Kevin Spacey, it seems very likely that Kreisberg's days are numbered.