'His slave': Studio lawyer says boss harassed, assaulted her
NEW YORK (AP) — A former lawyer at the studio behind "The Hunger Games" and "Twilight" movies said a powerful boss she once viewed as a father figure demanded she be his slave and subjected her to nonconsensual sexual contact.
She said she stayed quiet about it for years because she feared losing her job and never working in entertainment again.
Wendy Jaffe, the former executive vice president of legal affairs at Lionsgate, told The Associated Press on Tuesday her mind often shifted to "minimizing damage" and a mode she described as "spinning plates" to quickly come up with ways to stop general counsel Wayne Levin without humiliating him.
"I remember feeling like my head was spinning, and I'm sort of outside myself and I immediately went to the mode of spinning plates," Jaffe said, describing one of the earliest alleged encounters, in 2002.
"I started to question: 'How could this be happening? What did I do to make him think this was going to be OK?'" she continued, echoing the early reactions of many women who've spoken up about sexual misconduct since the #MeToo movement exploded last October. "And if I embarrass him, I'm in trouble. My career is over."
Jaffe finally complained about Levin as she left Lionsgate in 2016 and has only told her story publicly in recent days, first to The Wall Street Journal and then in an on-camera interview with the AP. Lionsgate agreed to pay Jaffe a $2.5 million settlement.
Levin's lawyer said they're not discussing Jaffe's allegations in the press.
Lionsgate, which noted Levin's departure "for health and personal reasons" in a November 2017 regulatory filing, said it doesn't comment on specific personnel actions.