EXCLUSIVE: Filmmaker Neil Marshall has provided Deadline with a statement which he made today, refuting and smashing the alleged reports out there that he was involved in attempting to extort NBC Universal Vice Chairman Ron Meyer on behalf of fiancée, Charlotte Kirk, whom the executive had a reported consensual affair with eight years ago.
You can read Marshall’s statement below:
I am a filmmaker, lucky enough to have had moderate success and keep working for almost 20 years now. And any of my friends, anyone who’s worked closely with me, anyone who knows me personally, and not just as some name in a headline, will know that what’s being said about me is a load of old bollocks.
Fantasia Pulls ‘The Reckoning’ Q&A With Director Neil Marshall & Actress Charlotte Kirk Amid Media Storm Over Ron Meyer Exit
In case that doesn’t make it clear, the allegations concerning myself, Ron Meyer and NBC/Universal are nothing but lies based upon falsehoods. There isn’t a grain of truth to this story, so I urge you, don’t just look at a headline and take it as gospel. Certain websites believe they can publish whatever scurrilous garbage that is fed to them with impunity. Such provocative nonsense doesn’t deserve my time, or yours. The trouble is, those lies are out there now, and my career and reputation have already been irreparably damaged by them.
For too long now a tightly knit group of morally corrupt dinosaurs has ruled the roost here in Hollywood, their extinction date long overdue. Thanks to the #metoo movement, and every resignation and revelation it has brought about, things are changing for the better. What we need now is more women in charge of studios, and the absolute abolishment of the terrible casting couch culture (which has morphed into sexual predation) that has long been an accepted part of the business.
What we have here is a witch-hunt, plain and simple, perpetrated by overprivileged men in positions of power, aided by friends of equal standing and lack of ethics, fuelled by clickbait headlines such as we’ve seen these past few days, and carried out against the woman I love, my fiancé Charlotte Kirk. I am simply collateral damage, thrown to the wolves by using some trumped up malicious allegations as a smokescreen to distract the focus from the real villains here. Charlotte has had the guts to stand up to her detractors and not allow herself to be bullied into submission, and neither will I.
Yesterday, a report published in TheWrap said that Marshall and filmmaker Joshua Newton allegedly attempt to extort Meyer, demanding money from the executive in exchange for keeping his affair with Kirk secret. Meyer stepped down on Tuesday from his position of 25 years at NBCU, jointly making an announcement with the conglomerate’s CEO Jeff Shell that his actions weren’t in line with the company’s policies in values. Meyer further expounded that he had a consensual affair with a woman who he “made a settlement, under threat, with…who had made false accusations against me…I made this disclosure because other parties learned of the settlement and have continuously attempted to extort me into paying them money or else they intended to falsely implicate NBCUniversal, which had nothing to do with this matter, and to publish false allegations about me.”
Following the news on Tuesday, reports pegged the woman that Meyer had the affair with as British actress Charlotte Kirk, the same woman who was at the center of an affair with former Warner Bros. chief Kevin Tsujihara; a scandal that led to his departure from the company after allegations were made that he procured parts for her in the studio’s movies Ocean’s 8 and How to Be Single. Allegedly, Meyer, knowing both Kirk and Tsujihara, tried to form a settlement between those two parties, however, that backfired in the NBCU executive’s face.
Earlier today, Marshall and Kirk pulled out of a virtual Q&A at the Fantasia festival in Canada where their period horror movie The Reckoning is making its world premiere. Hellboy and The Descent filmmaker Marshall directed and co-wrote the horror film, which Kirk co-wrote, executive-produced and stars in.