‘She Said’ Available on Disc 4 Days After Peacock Debut

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment will release She Said on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on Jan. 10, 2023 — four days after it becomes available through digital retailers and begins streaming on Peacock (Jan. 6).

Inspired by the Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation that empowered women to speak out, the film follows the true story of how reporters Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor shattered the silence surrounding sexual assault in Hollywood. Directed by Maria Schrader, She Said stars  Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan, with Mulligan’s performance receiving a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actress.

The cast also includes Patricia Clarkson, Andre Braugher and Ashley Judd.

Despite earning less than $6 million in theaters, She Said has been highly praised by critics and is certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. NPR called the film “a “powerful and unnerving” testament to the power of investigative journalism and its influence in reinvigorating the #MeToo movement.”

Bonus features include the original theatrical trailer as well as a new behind-the-scenes featurette with real-life journalists Twohey and Kantor detailing what it took to publish the groundbreaking story.

 

N.Y. Attorney General Letitia James Secures $30.5 Million Settlement From CBS, Former CEO Leslie Moonves for Insider Trading and Concealing Sexual Assault Allegations

New York Attorney General Letitia James Nov. 2 announced that the state prosecutor’s office secured a $30.5 million settlement from CBS and former CEO Leslie Moonves for concealing sexual assault allegations against the executive, misleading investors about those allegations, and insider trading.

CBS, which remerged with Viacom to become Paramount Global in February, is required to pay $28 million, $22 million of which will go back to CBS shareholders and $6 million to strengthening mechanisms for reporting and investigating complaints of sexual harassment and assault. In addition, any stock trade made by a senior executive of CBS must be specifically approved by the company’s chief legal officer.

Moonves is required to pay $2.5 million, which will go to CBS shareholders. In total, CBS shareholders will receive $24.5 million. Additionally, for the next five years, Moonves is not allowed to serve as an officer or director of any public company doing business in New York without written approval by OAG.

The investigation found that CBS and its senior leadership knew about multiple allegations of sexual assault made against Moonves and intentionally concealed those allegations from regulators, shareholders and the public for months. The investigation also revealed that another senior executive at CBS — one of the few people who knew about the allegations — sold millions of dollars of CBS stock in the weeks before the allegations became public.

Moonves, who had been positioning himself to become CEO of  ViacomCBS, resigned in 2018 following the allegations. The company is now headed by former Viacom CEO Bob Bakish.

“CBS and Leslie Moonves’ attempts to silence victims, lie to the public, and mislead investors can only be described as reprehensible,” James said in a statement. “As a publicly traded company, CBS failed its most basic duty to be honest and transparent with the public and investors. After trying to bury the truth to protect their fortunes, today CBS and Moonves are paying millions of dollars for their wrongdoing. Today’s action should send a strong message to companies across New York that profiting off injustice will not be tolerated and those who violate the law will be held accountable.”

According to OAG, at the height of the #MeToo movement, CBS and Moonves became aware of several sexual assault allegations against the longtime executive and tried to conceal them from the public. The investigation also unearthed information about an LAPD captain’s direct and repeated interference with the investigation.

Specifically, on the day an individual filed a confidential criminal sexual assault complaint against Moonves at an LAPD station in Hollywood, the LAPD captain informed a CBS executive of the confidential complaint. The captain shared an unredacted police report with the executive, who shared it with Moonves and other executives at CBS.

As CBS allegedly tried to hide the allegations, OAG disclosed that the media company authorized its former chief communications officer, Gil Schwartz, who was aware of the allegations and the LAPD police report, to sell his shares. Six weeks before the first news article about the allegations became public, Schwartz sold 160,709 shares of CBS stock at an average price of $55.08 for a total of $8,851,852. The stock dropped almost 11% in value from the day before the news broke to the trading day after.

The settlement also requires CBS to continue its obligations under OAG’s Civil Rights Bureau’s agreement, which requires CBS to conduct annual employee surveys about the work climate within CBS, submit its sexual harassment training to OAG for review, enhance its outreach and recruitment efforts to hire more women at all levels of management, and financially commit to fund human resources reforms within CBS.

ViacomCBS Releases First Environmental, Social and Governance Report

In the aftermath of the #MeToo movement, racial injustice protests and coronavirus pandemic, ViacomCBS, like other media giants, established an in-house corporate position aimed at elevating the company’s social, workplace and pandemic-responses. The report focuses on ViacomCBS’s on-screen content and social impact, workforce and culture, sustainable production and operations.

“ViacomCBS is focused on how we use the power of our platforms as content creators to meaningfully impact the issues that matter to our employees, audiences, partners, communities and investors,” CEO Bob Bakish said in a statement.

Bakish said  that as a “global content powerhouse,” ViacomCBS, which includes Paramount Pictures, BET, MTV and Nickelodeon, has a unique role shaping culture, social attitudes and societal outcomes.

“We’re committed to the opportunity and responsibility that comes with this reach and are proud to share how our company is taking action in our ESG report,” he said.

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Among the areas addressed in this report include:

  • Committed $100 million to those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including support for non-staff employees on ViacomCBS productions and other entertainment industry workers through third-party organizations and relief funds.
  • Worked to keep employees and the public safe and at home during the pandemic by leveraging ViacomCBS brands and on-air talent to amplify official health guidance through the #AloneTogether campaign, which consisted of 174,000 television spots, social media posts and other content across company platforms.

 

On-screen Content and Social Impact:

  • Responded to nationwide protests over victims of racial violence and police killings by donating an additional $5 million to social justice and criminal justice reform organizations, participating in the industry-wide “Blackout Tuesday” day of reflection on June 2 and honoring the death of George Floyd by going dark for eight minutes and 46 seconds on ten networks. The monetary donations build on the company’s standing contributions each year to a range of community organizations.
  • Set several new goals to increase diversity behind the camera, including at least 40% representation of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) in the writers’ rooms of CBS and Showtime Network shows during the 2021-22 programming season.

 

Workforce and Culture:

  • Expanded company-wide efforts to strengthen ViacomCBS’ diversity and inclusion, including through its commitment to publicly disclose the diversity data of its workforce.
  • Continued to hold its annual Global Inclusion Week, an expansive multi-day experience featuring speakers, immersive sessions and interactive workshops designed to raise awareness and foster conversation about diversity and inclusion, and inspire a sense of engagement and belonging across the company.

 

Sustainable Production and Operations:

  • Committed to reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in line with the requirements of the Paris Agreement, continuing a declining trend that saw GHG emissions at legacy Viacom drop by 20% from 2014-2018.
  • Increased the number of productions following the Green Production Guide to minimize the environmental impact of filming and derived 10% of the company’s global energy use from renewable sources.

 

“While we know we have more work to do, this ESG report reflects our dedication to greater transparency and disclosure as we continue to develop our ESG strategy and strengthen our impact in these areas going forward,”  said Crystal Barnes, SVP of corporate social responsibility and ESG. “This is just one of the many steps ahead on our ESG journey.”

Post Kevin Tsujihara, WarnerMedia Releases First Diversity Report

WarnerMedia Sept. 26 released its first-ever annual report looking at diversity, inclusion and belonging across both its corporate operations and the films, television series and digital content created by its various production businesses.

In September 2018, WarnerMedia announced a “production diversity policy,” which included the commitment to report on its diversity and inclusion efforts annually.

The policy was partially in response to the fallout following the resignation of former Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara, who left the studio after revelations of an extramarital affair with an aspiring actress.

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Earlier this year, WarnerMedia hired its first chief enterprise inclusion officer, Christy Haubegger, saying her leadership would be key to expanding and developing initiatives designed to make the company and its content more diverse and inclusive.

The report, covering 2018, highlighted three areas at WarnerMedia: workforce (including workforce composition, employee resource groups), content (including scripted TV, films, news, animation) and community (including industry and local outreach partnerships and programs).

Among the key findings related to workforce and production staffing:

WarnerMedia’s global workforce is 54% male and 46% female, and its U.S. workforce is 53% male and 47% female.

Globally, half of all new hires and promotions to VP and above were women.

About 42% of non-managers were people of color, but representation decreased at more senior levels. However, the percentage of people of color who were hired or promoted in 2018 exceeded their total percentage across all levels.

“This will lead to increased representation going forward,” read the report.

Across WarnerMedia’s non-film scripted programming, females represented 34% of onscreen roles and 23% of behind-the-camera positions.

Across WarnerMedia’s non-film scripted programming, people of color represented 24% of onscreen roles and 23% of behind-the-camera positions.

“[At] WarnerMedia companies, we have a longstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion, and consider these values an important part of our culture and a business priority,” John Stankey, COO of AT&T and CEO, WarnerMedia, said in a statement.

“While I’m incredibly proud of what this report shows and our ongoing dedication to transparency, I recognize that we’ve got more work to do at every level. We know diversity, inclusion and belonging are important to our employees, our creative partners, our customers and to our success.”

Indeed, the report underscored various examples of diversity and inclusion in action, including spotlights on various employee resource groups (Black Professionals@Turner, HBO Proud, Women of Warner UK and others), employee-centric content and platforms showcasing D&I activities across the enterprise (Warner Bros.’ “We See You,” Turner’s “Hello, My Name Is…” and “HBO POV”) and a behind-the-scenes look at the company’s films, TV shows and animated series.

While the report only tracked gender and race, WarnerMedia said it is developing new processes, tools and formats for gathering more detailed information about the diversity of its workforce and productions, allowing it to better tailor its efforts and outreach.

Going forward, the annual report will look at data from the previous full calendar year, and will evolve to reflect the changes taking place across WarnerMedia’s businesses.