Eight women have come forward with accusations of sexual and emotional abuse against Bright screenwriter Max Landis in an extensive report published Tuesday by The Daily Beast.
The article chronicles accounts of Landis’ vile behavior over a 10-year span, where several women recount Landis openly critiquing their appearance in front of others, discussing sexual matters in the workplace, choking them in public, humiliating them during sex, and isolating them from friends and family, among other misconduct.
In an account mirrored by all of the women, Landis’s “entire MO” was to use his fame, power and familial connections to lure vulnerable women “who just moved to L.A. from who knows where” into his circle of friends, and once they were pulled into his orbit, aggressively pursue relationships with them (“He swoops in, and like a predator, he knows how to hook a person,” an anonymous woman under the name of Lainey told The Daily Beast). From there, they say Landis would then emotionally and physically berate, belittle and humiliate the women.
One woman recalled an incident where Landis asked her if she wanted to see something “awful” and presented her with a ranked list of the names of all of the women he’d slept with. He scrolled to the bottom and showed her her ranking.
“He would systematically try to have sex with all the women I knew. We’re not people to him,” a woman under the name of Samantha alleged.
The Daily Beast also addressed a 2008 sexual assault claim accusing Landis of raping an unconscious woman. The claim was eventually dropped by the woman listed on the documents after allegedly being coerced by Landis’ attorney to rethink how she “wanted to handle ‘this issue.’”
The Daily Beast’s expose is not the first time allegations against Landis have come to light. Landis’s behavior came under public scrutiny around the release of his steaming misfire Bright in December 2017, when multiple women came forward on Twitter to allege that his abuse and history of sexual misconduct was an “open secret” in Hollywood.
More recently, actress Whitney Moore released a statement on Twitter apologizing for her association with the screenwriter and calling him “not a safe person to be around.”
At the time of The Daily Beast report’s publication, Landis, who gained traction after penning the found-footage cult film Chronicle in 2012, and has since kept busy by optioning and directing a series of critical misfires (Victor Frankenstein, Mr. Right and American Ultra, to name a few), was in the pre-production stages of two feature projects, Shadow in the Cloud and Deeper.
A representative for the producers of Shadow in the Cloud told The Daily Beast they have renegotiated with Landis to have him removed as producer, but the status of Deeper, to which Idris Elba has been attached to star, is still in limbo.
You can read The Daily Beast’s full piece here.