Amazon Studios boss Roy Price placed on leave after sexual harassment allegations
As more and more women come forward with stories of Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein’s decades-long sexual harassment, accusations against other powerful men in the industry are starting to surface.
Back in August, Man in the High Castle producer Isa Hackett detailed an incident with Roy Price, the head of Amazon Studios, which occurred in 2015, but declined to elaborate, telling The Information, “I do not wish to discuss the details of this troubling incident with Roy except to say Amazon investigated immediately and with an outside investigator.”
In the wake of the Weinstein scandal, Hackett has now gone on the record with The Hollywood Reporter to reveal that Price allegedly made inappropriate remarks to her during San Diego Comic-Con. Variety then reported that Amazon has put Price on a leave of absence “effective immediately.”
Allegedly, after meeting Price for the first time during a day of press events for her Amazon show Man in the High Castle, Hackett shared a cab with him and another Amazon executive, Michael Paull, at which point, per THR, “Price repeatedly and insistently propositioned her.”
“You will love my dick,” Price allegedly said, according to Hackett’s account, despite Hackett reiterating that she wasn’t interested, telling Price she is a lesbian with a wife and children. Once they got to the party, Hackett said Price continued to proposition her, and also loudly said, “Anal sex!” into her ear while she spoke with other Amazon executives.
In August, it was revealed that Price was under independent investigation after Hackett filed a complaint with the company immediately following the alleged incident. She received no further updates on the claims, and refrained from sharing details publicly until now.
“I didn’t want to distract or deflate the energies of all the people who are so invested in these shows, and all of that positivity,” she told THR. “You don’t want to bring this into it. It feels demoralizing.”
Following her complaint, Hackett continued to work on her two Amazon shows — both of which are based on the works of her father, Philip K. Dick — including the upcoming Electric Dreams.
Meanwhile, Price continued to spearhead other Amazon projects, including two Weinstein Company television shows — The Romanoffs, from Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner, and an untitled David O. Russell drama starring Robert De Niro and Julianne Moore. Both projects reportedly came with a hefty price tag ($70 million for The Romanoffs and $160 million for Russell’s project), with Deadline noting that “the close relationship between Amazon Studios head Roy Price and Harvey Weinstein [was] said to have been a factor in the back-to-back big-ticket buys.”
Ultimately Hackett says she felt compelled to come forward with her story in the wake of the Weinstein scandal because, “I feel inspired by the other women who have been far braver than I am, who have come forward. I hope we all continue to inspire each other and ultimately create change.”
Writer and actress Rose McGowan, who came forward as one of Harvey Weinstein’s victims and remains one of the most outspoken voices against sexual harassment in the industry, added her own thoughts on how Amazon enables sexual predators Thursday. In tweets addressed to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, McGowan said that after selling a project to Amazon, she voiced her concerns about Weinstein to Price, who allegedly ignored her.
“I am calling on you to stop funding rapists, alleged pedos and sexual harassers. I love
@amazon but there is rot in Hollywood,” she wrote. “Be the change you want to see in the world. Stand with truth.”
In a statement given to Variety, an Amazon spokesperson said, “We are reviewing our options for our projects we have with the Weinstein Company.”