Filmmaker Brett Ratner has filed a lawsuit against a woman accusing him of rape.
It was reported yesterday (November 1) that Rush Hour director Ratner has been accused of multiple instances of sexual misconduct, with actresses Olivia Munn and Natasha Henstridge among the women to make claims of sexual harassment and assault against the director. Through his attorney, Ratner denied each of the claims.
Variety recently obtained a Facebook post by Melanie Kohler, a former employee of the Endeavor Talent Agency, the talent agency that later became William Morris Endeavor. “Brett Ratner raped me,” Kohler wrote. “I’m saying his name, I’m saying it publicly. Now at least I can look at myself in the mirror and not feel like part of me is a coward or a hypocrite. I’m standing up and saying this happened to me and it was not ok. Come what may, it is the right thing to do.”
In her post, Kohler accused Ratner of “preying” on her in a club “about 12 years ago” and then forcing himself on her at the home of film producer Robert Evans. “I’m embarrassed, humiliated, ashamed, and wish I could go back to forgetting it ever happened,” she wrote.
Ratner has since filed a lawsuit against Kohler, according to Variety, describing the allegations as “deliberately false and malicious”. He goes on to say that as a “direct and proximate” result of Kohler’s post he “has suffered injuries to his personal and professional reputations”. Ratner’s attorney Marty Singer has said that his client is innocent, calling Kohler’s story “completely fabricated”.
Earlier, it was reported that Ratner has “stepped away” from working with Warner Bros following the allegations levelled at him. “In light of the allegations being made, I am choosing to personally step away from all Warner Bros-related activities,” a statement issued by a representative of the director read. “I don’t want to have any possible negative impact to the studio until these personal issues are resolved.”