That’s the query that has riveted if not rocked the business this week after NBCUniversal government Ron Meyer acknowledged paying hush-money to actress Charlotte Kirk to cowl up a years-old affair that spiraled into an alleged extortion plot, resulting in his ouster from his longtime perch on the studio.
Meyer was the second mogul embroiled in a intercourse scandal with Kirk to be toppled in lower than two years.
Final 12 months, former Warner Bros. studio head Kevin Tsujihara resigned after textual content messages suggesting he would discover movie roles for Kirk, with whom he had a sexual relationship, grew to become public. Tsujihara denied having a direct position in securing her roles.
Upon their assembly, Kirk informed Meyer that she was going to be in Los Angeles. He responded that she ought to give him a name when she was on the town. The pair started speaking. A 12 months after they first met, they grew to become sexually concerned.
The connection was temporary — two encounters throughout a two-week interval, based on somebody with data of the connection who was not approved to remark publicly.
Whereas the extramarital affair ended, Kirk continued to succeed in out to Meyer, vice chairman of NBCUniversal, looking for his recommendation on the business and performing roles.
Final 12 months, Meyer agreed to pay Kirk $2 million in 4 installments and, in alternate, she signed a nondisclosure settlement, based on three sources acquainted with the matter who weren’t approved to remark. Not less than one fee within the quantity of $500,000 was made, the three sources mentioned.
Kirk didn’t reply to requests for remark.
Quite than put an finish to the matter, issues escalated.
Meyer discovered himself in a dispute with Kirk’s associates. Joshua Newton, Kirk’s former boyfriend who directed her within the within the low-budget movie “Nicole & O.J.,” and her present boyfriend, director Neil Marshall, who directed 2019’s “Hellboy” and episodes of HBO’s “Recreation of Thrones,” grew to become conscious of Kirk’s affair with Meyer and the following settlement.
In accordance with three sources acquainted with the matter, over the past 12 months the 2 administrators ratcheted up stress on Meyer, threatening to reveal the affair and convey the knowledge to Comcast, the mum or dad firm of NBCUniversal, if Meyer didn’t help with their tasks.
Late final week, Meyer divulged his secret settlement to NBCUniversal. By Monday night time, there have been plans for him to part ways with the company.
“I made this disclosure as a result of different events realized of the settlement and have repeatedly tried to extort me into paying them cash or else they supposed to falsely implicate NBCUniversal, which had nothing to do with this matter, and to publish false allegations about me,” Meyer mentioned in an announcement.
Newton couldn’t be reached for remark. Marshall and his representatives didn’t reply to requests for remark.
In an announcement to Deadline, Marshall denied he tried to extort Meyer, saying the claims have been “nothing however lies primarily based on falsehoods” and that his fiancée, Kirk, was the sufferer of a “witch hunt” that was “perpetrated by overprivileged males in positions of energy.”
Larry Caldwell, a Woodland Hills lawyer mentioned to be representing Newton, declined to verify that Newton was his shopper. Caldwell did name Meyer’s characterization of extortion a “false narrative.”
Because the alleged stress marketing campaign mounted, representatives of Meyer’s contacted the FBI. A spokesperson for the FBI mentioned, “Whereas the FBI can’t affirm or deny the existence of an investigation, it can examine any allegation of extortion to find out if federal legislation has been violated.”
After finding out performing in London, at 19, Kirk moved to the U.S. She’s had elements within the 2015 thriller “Vice” and the 2018 movie “Ulysses: A Darkish Odyssey.”
Kirk’s newest position is within the horror movie “The Reckoning,” directed by Marshall. The movie was set to display Thursday throughout Montreal’s digital Fantasia Competition in an occasion showcasing new style movies.
Kirk and Marshall have been scheduled to take part in a Q&A concerning the movie, however a spokeswoman for the pageant informed The Occasions in an e-mail that whereas the movie will display there will probably be no Q&A as initially deliberate.
Regardless of the notoriety Kirk has attracted, those that have labored along with her communicate positively of the actress. Two unbiased filmmakers who labored on tasks that includes Kirk described her as skilled and straightforward to cope with.
Craig Williams, a director, producer and composer, solid her in his 2016 pilot, “The Demo,” a darkish comedy wherein a lady takes revenge for casting sofa abuses in Hollywood.
“Charlotte is a novel girl,” he mentioned in a phone interview. “ When all of it got here out, we chuckled and mentioned, ‘It’s form of just like the movie.’”
Italian director Federico Alotto solid Kirk as Kaly (a contemporary model of the goddess Calypso) in his first function, “Ulysses: A Darkish Odyssey,” after assembly her on the Beverly Hills Movie Competition in 2014.
“I selected Charlotte as a result of, the primary time I noticed her, she was blond, she had this angel face, she was good,” he mentioned, including that he discovered her “actually skilled with me and my actors.”
A 3rd filmmaker, who declined to be named out of concern of reprisals, famous that when Kirk went after roles, it was obvious that she had high-profile relationships all through the business. However he had no concept concerning the scandals that will quickly envelop her.
“She was a type of folks we hoped would blow up in a constructive method,” this particular person mentioned. “There was a way that she was going locations.”
It was Kirk’s relationship with Tsujihara and different notable Hollywood males, nevertheless, that thrust her identify into the limelight.
Kirk appeared in minor roles in two Warner Bros. motion pictures: the 2018 caper movie “Ocean’s 8” and the 2016 New Line Cinema romantic comedy “How one can Be Single.”
The textual content messages, first revealed in a Hollywood Reporter article detailing her relationship with Tsujihara, additionally chronicled what seemed to be a marketing campaign to get her conferences and auditions.
In addition they disclosed that Kirk had a relationship with Australian billionaire James Packer, who launched Kirk to Tsujihara. Packer had a enterprise partnership with director Brett Ratner, and collectively they secured a $450-million cope with Warner Bros.
Among the many textual content messages, Kirk texted Ratner and urged she was “used as icing on the cake” for the deal between Warner Bros. and Ratner’s firm. Here, you can read about Amy Ryan Net Worth.
In an interview with DailyMailTV final 12 months, Kirk mentioned that she didn’t take into account herself a sufferer. “I wasn’t pressured into something, and I did what I needed to do — good or unhealthy,” however added that she would make totally different decisions now. “I remorse doing that.”
In a separate interview with the Each day Mail, her mom defended her daughter and mentioned was recognized with Asperger syndrome as a younger woman.
A number of reviews have urged that Meyer suggested Kirk when she was pursuing a settlement with Tsujihara.
Meyer’s exit marked a shocking finish to a protracted profession. He grew to become president of Common Studios 25 years in the past and beforehand was in control of the theme parks and movie-studio operations till he took on a extra advisory position in 2013.
Meyer is thought for his tight relationships with business insiders, together with Steven Spielberg. He’s beloved for his penchant for calling buddies to test in with them and his capability to appease fragile Hollywood egos.
He additionally was identified for having a high-stakes playing behavior for a few years.
Final 12 months, Meyer filed a $10-million lawsuit in opposition to two artwork sellers, claiming they bought him a cast Mark Rothko portray in 2001.
In Might 2018, Meyer and his spouse Kelly Chapman separated after 25 years of marriage.
The next 12 months, he listed his compound on Pacific Coast Freeway for a jaw-dropping $125 million. Meyer bought the property that sits on a three-plus-acre bluff overlooking the ocean, for $100 million in September, $25 million lower than the asking worth.
Meyer had taken out a number of mortgage loans on the property since 2014, in extra of $100 million, together with greater than $84 million from Hankey Capital, the funding firm headed by native billionaire Don Hankey, The Times reported on the time.
“I’ve spent 25 years serving to to develop and assist an unbelievable firm in a job I like,” Meyer mentioned within the assertion. “It’s the folks at this firm that I’ll miss essentially the most. I remorse what has occurred, and I’m sorry for all of the folks in my life I could have let down, particularly and most significantly, my household.”