Oscars board expels producer over sexual assault allegations

The organisation behind the Oscars has voted to expel Harvey Weinstein following numerous allegations of sexual assault made against the film producer.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said its board “voted well in excess of the required two-thirds majority” to expel him.
Its members include Hollywood figures such as Tom Hanks and Whoopi Goldberg.
Weinstein’s films have received more than 300 Oscar nominations and won 81.
In a statement, the Academy said governors voted to expel Weinstein “not simply to separate ourselves from someone who does not merit the respect of his colleagues but also to send a message that the era of wilful ignorance and shameful complicity in sexually predatory behaviour and workplace harassment in our industry is over”.
They added: “What’s at issue here is a deeply troubling problem that has no place in our society.”
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The emergency board meeting followed an avalanche of accusations against the producer by more than two dozen women, including actresses Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Rose McGowan, who alleges that he raped her in a hotel room.
Police forces in the US and the UK are investigating the allegations.
Weinstein, 65, has apologised for some aspects of his behaviour but insisted that any sexual contacts he had were consensual, and he denies accusations of criminal sexual harassment, rape and sexual assault.

Media captionOn some red carpets, Harvey Weinstein is not a welcome subject
The expulsion comes after Bob Weinstein told the Hollywood Reporter that his “sick and depraved” brother should be “kicked out” of the Academy.
Filmmaker Woody Allen told the BBC the scandal was “very sad for everybody involved”.
“Tragic for all women involved and sad for Harvey. The whole situation is very sad. There are no winners in that,” he said in New York.
Weinstein’s expulsion means he will no longer be able to vote for nominees or winners in the Oscars.
Hollywood figures were quick to praise the move but some have called for the Academy to take similar action against other members.
Where does the Academy go from here?
By the BBC’s Laura Bicker in Los Angeles
The Academy is trying to send a message that the casting couch culture that has been talked about in this industry for so long is over.
This is a key moment for an industry which stands accused of developing a culture that makes women feel that exploitation is a price to pay to get a job.
But in voting to expel Harvey Weinstein, the Academy has a problem.
If Weinstein is indeed the tip of the iceberg, as many industry insiders have said, what do they do about other members who have been accused of sexual assault, such as Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski? As many people who have spoken to me here have said, the Academy condemnation cannot stop here.

It is only the second time a member has been expelled. Actor Carmine Caridi had his membership revoked in 2004 after he allegedly sent confidential film preview videos to a friend which ended up online. source bbc.co.uk

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