Emma Thompson has quit her latest film after former Pixar animator, John Lasseter was hired.
John worked as the chief creative officer of Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar and Disneytoon Studios and officially left the companies last year, following a six month leave of absence.
The animator faced multiple accusations of misconduct in the workplace in 2017, as The New York Times reported that several women who worked with James claimed that they were subject to “inappropriate touching” or “kissing” amongst other accusations.
Following the accusations made against him, John released a statement in which he said it was painful to “face your missteps” and added: “I especially want to apologize to anyone who has ever been on the receiving end of an unwanted hug or any other gesture they felt crossed the line in any way, shape, or form.”
While the animator left Disney and Pixar following the allegations, he was hired by Skydance Animation for their upcoming film last month.
Emma, who was meant to voice a character in the animation, has announced that she has left the production due to the hiring of John.
The actress sent a letter to Skydance Animation about why she quit the film and it has now been published by The L.A. Times.
“As you know, I have pulled out of the production of “Luck” — to be directed by the very wonderful Alessandro Carloni. It feels very odd to me that you and your company would consider hiring someone with Mr. Lasseter’s pattern of misconduct given the present climate in which people with the kind of power that you have can reasonably be expected to step up to the plate,” she began.
“If a man has been touching women inappropriately for decades, why would a woman want to work for him if the only reason he’s not touching them inappropriately now is that it says in his contract that he must behave “professionally”?” she continued, listing out a number of questions she had for the company.
“Skydance has revealed that no women received settlements from Pixar or Disney as a result of being harassed by John Lasseter. But given all the abuse that’s been heaped on women who have come forward to make accusations against powerful men, do we really think that no settlements means that there was no harassment or no hostile work environment?”
“Are we supposed to feel comforted that women who feel that their careers were derailed by working for Lasseter DIDN’T receive money?”
The actress went on to say that the director of the film, Alessandro Carloni is “incredibly creative” but that she “can only do what feels right”.
I don’t think I am overstating this, but this letter from Emma Thompson on her departure from Luck is one the most significant moments in this movement. pic.twitter.com/RXkr7FXOkL
— Melissa Silverstein (@melsil) February 26, 2019
“I am well aware that centuries of entitlement to women’s bodies whether they like it or not is not going to change overnight. Or in a year. But I am also aware that if people who have spoken out — like me — do not take this sort of a stand then things are very unlikely to change at anything like the pace required to protect my daughter’s generation,” she finished.