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Harvey Weinstein Reaches Tentative $44 Million Deal With Accusers

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  • Harvey Weinstein, who has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than 80 women, and his former studio have reached a tentative $44 million deal to settle lawsuits with his accusers and other parties.
  • About $30 million would go to the accusers, studio creditors, and former employees of Weinstein Co.
  • The remaining $14 million would cover legal fees that Weinstein’s associates faced, including board members who were named as defendants in lawsuits.
  • The settlement would be paid by insurance policies and will not affect ongoing criminal lawsuits against him.

Tentative Settlement

Harvey Weinstein and his former studio board have reached a tentative multi-million dollar deal with women who have accused him of sexual misconduct.

Adam Harris, a lawyer for Weinstein Co. co-founder Bob Weinstein, told a bankruptcy court judge on Thursday, “For the first time, as of yesterday…we now have an economic agreement in principle that is supported by the plaintiffs, the [New York attorney general’s] office, the defendants and all of the insurers.”

The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times both reported that a $44 million deal was proposed. Of the proposed sum, about $30 million would be distributed to the accusers, studio creditors, and former employees of Weinstein’s company. The remaining $14 would pay for legal fees that Weinstein’s associates faced, including board members who were named as defendants in lawsuits.

The money to settle the civil suits won’t come from Weinstein himself but instead will come from insurance policies.

The tentative deal came about a year of mediation hearing. However, according to the Times, the proposed sum is less than half of what was initially discussed as a victims’ fund last year between an investor group that was interested in buying assets of the Weinstein Co. and then New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman.

The deal must still be approved by advisors who now run Weinstein Co. in bankruptcy proceedings. The outcome of this settlement will be especially significant because lawsuits are one of the main ways that Weinstein can be held responsible for his alleged actions.

“It’s been a long complex process and we do feel this settlement provides a measure of justice though it’s not everything one might hope for and it reflects a long effort to reach a compromise between different parties that have claims to some of the money from the whole Weinstein enterprise,” Aaron Filler, an attorney representing actress Paz de la Huerta, one of the plaintiffs, told the Times.

Background

Weinstein, who has been accused of sexual misconduct by over 80 women, was one of the most powerful figures in Hollywood until 2017 when investigations from The New York Times and The New Yorker laid out numerous allegations of sexual harassment, abuse, and other forms of misconduct. Weinstein’s list of accusers includes high profile actresses like Ashley Judd, Rose McGowan, Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Cara Delevigne.

The accusations against Weinstein inspired more and more victims of abuse to speak out, sparking the massive #MeToo movement that has even reached industries outside of Hollywood.

Weinstein has denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty to rape and other sex crimes. However, since the settlement relates to civil lawsuits, it will not impact any pending criminal investigations against him.

He still faces a criminal case involving two accusers in New York, where he faces charges for rape and other crimes. Motions have been filed in that case to allow for other women to testify, which could help build a stronger case for prosecutors against the movie mogul.

In January of this year, a federal judge in California dismissed a sexual harassment claim filed by Ashley Judd. The judge sided with the defense lawyers who argued that the law cited in the lawsuit at the time of the alleged offense, did not cover movie producers like Weinstein. That marked the second instance where a judge dismissed the claims in Judd’s lawsuit.

The Weinstein Company filed for bankruptcy last year feeling the burden of the lawsuits brought forth by accusers, who say that Weinstein Co. had also engaged in and allowed for misconduct.

See what others are saying: (The New York Times) (The Wall Street Journal) (Fox News)

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Bella Thorne Posts Her Own Topless Photos After Threats From Hacker

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  • Actress Bella Thorne posted topless photos of herself on social media in response to threats from a hacker who had obtained the images.
  • In an apparent message to the hacker, Throne wrote: “I can sleep tonight better knowing I took my power back. U can’t control my life u never will.”
  • Many fans have supported the move, calling Thorne brave, while others wonder if this incident is a stunt to promote her new book.

The Tweet

Actress Bella Thorne posted topless photos of herself on Twitter after a hacker threated to release the images that were stolen from her.

On Saturday, Thorne tweeted out screenshots of text messages between her and an alleged hacker, which included nude photos and videos of Thorne. Along with the photos, the actress also included a message to her fans in the tweet, explaining her decision to release the photos.

“I feel someone has taken something from me that I only wanted one special person to see,” Thorne wrote. “He has sent multiple nude photos of other celebs, he won’t stop with me or them he will just keep going.”

She continues, “for too long I let a man take advantage of me over and over and I’m f***ing sick of it, I’m putting this out because it’s MY DECISION NOW U DON’T GET TO TAKE YET ANOTHER THING FROM ME. I can sleep tonight better knowing I took my power back. U can’t control my life u never will.”

The tweet and photos come just days after Thorne’s twitter was hacked. On Thursday, the actress’ social media account was filled with racial slurs and sexually explicit messages. By the end of the day, Thorne had regained control and deleted all the tweets.

Thorne’s full statement released via Twitter.

Responses

Many of Thorne’s fans have praised her, calling her strong and brave for standing up to her hacker.

However, others have questioned her motivation and wonder if this was just a promotional scheme for her new book.

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Other Celebrity Hacking Incidents

In 2014, hundreds of private photos, including some belonging to Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, and Kristen Dunst, were leaked online. According to the U.S. Justice Department, four men used various forms of fake emails to pose as security alerts from accounts to obtain login information and passwords.

They gained access to over a thousand different iCloud and Gmail accounts and were eventually charged with felony computer hacking. All four men ended up in federal prison after being found guilty or accepting a plea deal.

As for pursuing legal options in her case, Thorne says she believes her hacker is likely a minor, so she wants to try and be reasonable.

“This kid sounds like he’s 17,” she told the Hollywood Reporter. “As much as I’m so angry and wanted to f*** him up over doing this to people I just wanted to teach him a lesson. He’s still a kid and we make mistakes, this mistake is a bad one. But I don’t want some 17-year-old’s whole life ruined because he wasn’t thinking straight and [was] being a dumbass.”

“You can’t always tear someone down for their bad sides but more so build up their good sides.”

On Wednesday actress Victoria Justice also had her Twitter account hacked. She has since deleted tweets that were posted without her consent, but it is unclear if hacks against Justice and Thorne are related.

See what others are saying: (The Hollywood Reporter) (Entertainment Tonight) (News18)

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Kylie Jenner Faces Backlash Over “Handmaid’s Tale” Themed Party

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  • Kylie Jenner threw a Handmaid’s Tale themed party for her friend Stassie Karanikolaou’s birthday.
  • The party theme outraged many online who called it “disheartening” and “tone deaf.”
  • Meanwhile, some fans spoke out in Jenner’s defense, pointing out that it’s not uncommon for fans to throw parties or dress in costumes based on their favorite shows.

The Party

Twitter users are slamming Kylie Jenner for the Handmaid’s Tale themed bash she threw for her friend Anastasia “Stassie” Karanikolaou’s birthday.

On Saturday, Jenner’s Hidden Hills home was transformed to resemble Gilead, the fictional setting in the popular television series. She shared details of the party on her Instagram, which showed the house decorated with Gilead flags while the waiting staff dressed as Marthas – domestic servants to wealthy families in the series.

Guests wore matching Handmaids costumes and greeted each other with the phrase “praise be.” The party guests were also offered cocktails including  “praise be vodka” and “under his eye tequila.”

“You know the Handmaid’s Tale is my favorite show ever..so for Stass’ birthday, welcome to Gilead,” Jenner says on her Instagram story.

Those who were invited included, Jenner’s assistant Victoria Villarroel, her makeup artist Ariel Tejada, and Scott Disick’s girlfriend Sofia Richie.

Many criticized Jenner and her friends for the theme. The series, which is based on Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel, showcases a dystopian society where women are enslaved, routinely raped and abused, forced into childbirth, and more.

The red robes and white bonnets were designed to label women and prevent them from looking at their surroundings. They have been used in several protests over recent years by women standing up for issues like reproductive rights and fighting against sexual assault.

Backlash

The party was quickly met with backlash online, with many shocked by the theme.

Defense

Still, many fans defended Jenner. Some even pointed out that it is not uncommon to throw parties based on popular shows and movies.

See what others are saying: (Cosmopolitan) (People) (Teen Vogue)



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How Markiplier, Bear Grylls, Kimmy Schmidt and The Fine Bros. are Changing the Future of Television

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Ever since Black Mirror: Bandersnatch was released on Netflix in December, more and more digital entertainment companies have been announcing new interactive projects that allow the audience to control the direction of the plot. But is this just a gimmick or is interactivity a trend that could change the future of television as we know it?

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