USC Distances Itself From Les Moonves After Sexual Assault Allegations

05 August, 2018, 22:11 | Author: Irvin Gilbert
  • Stephen Colbert

The entertainment mogul was suspended from the board of the USC School of Cinematic Arts Wednesday.

USC School of Cinematic Arts on Wednesday suspended embattled CBS Chief Executive Leslie Moonves from the school's board shortly after the university's communications department said it was temporarily removing Moonves' name from its cutting-edge student newsroom. No other action was taken, the statement from CBS said. The company's board of directors decided not to take any immediate disciplinary action against Moonves on Monday.

The center, previously known as the The Julie Chen/Leslie Moonves and CBS Media Center, was a joint gift from the couple and the network in 2015.

Four women told Farrow that Moonves had forcibly touched or kissed them during business meetings, and two said Moonves physically intimated them and threatened to derail their careers. Viacom shares, conversely, have risen 3 percent during that time on investor expectations that the chances of a merger with CBS have increased.

CBS's lack of immediate action against Moonves was a "slap in the face to the fearless women who came forward", said Melissa Silverstein, founder of the blog Women and Hollywood, in a Twitter post, as social media reacted quickly to CBS's announcement.

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CBS issued a statement last Friday vowing to investigate the allegations.

Moonves, who is married to TV personality and CBS producer Julie Chen, was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 2013.

"Moonves, who joined CBS in 1995 and has been CEO since 2006, has said that he "may have made some women uncomfortable by making advances", which he called mistakes that he regretted immensely, but that he understood "'no" means "no'" and had never used his position to harm anyone's career.

"All allegations of personal misconduct are to be taken seriously", according to the statement. No charges were filed, but Moonves revealed the existence of the investigation to a board committee, which hired a law firm to investigate, according to the Times, which cited two unnamed people familiar with the matter.

As the future of CBS' leadership comes into question, CBS is also locked in a court battle with its parent company, National Amusements, which also owns Viacom.

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