HBO removes Russell Simmons from the All Def Comedy series amid sexual assault claims just a day after the music mogul quit his business empire
- HBO is distancing itself from Russell Simmons over sexual assault allegations
- Simmons was accused on Thursday of sexually assaulting Jenny Lumet in 1991?
- Actress Lumet, 50, revealed her accusation in The Hollywood Reporter?
- Simmons also stepped down from his $340M multi-industry empire on Thursday
- Model?Keri Claussen Khalighi also accused him of sexually assaulting her in 1991
- HBO said Simmons 'will not appear' in the new series All Def Comedy?
- The series, created by Simmons, will not feature his name as it moves forward
HBO has announced that the network will be removing Russell Simmons from the All Def Comedy series in the wake of the sexual assault allegations against music mogul.?
Simmons, who is the creator and executive director of All Def Comedy which first aired on November 12, 2016, quit his business and music empire Thursday after being accused of sexual misconduct by a second woman.?
'HBO will be airing All Def Comedy as planned,' the network said in a statement to?Deadline.?
'However, Russell Simmons will not appear in the new series, and we will be removing his name from the show moving forward.?
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HBO has announced that the network will be removing Russell Simmons (pictured in September) from the All Def Comedy series in the wake of the sexual assault allegations against music mogul
Simmons, who is the creator of All Def Comedy, quit his business and music empire Thursday after being accused of sexual misconduct by a second woman. Simmons is pictured during HBO's 2005 Def Poetry Jam in NYC with Mos Def (left) and Wyclef Jean (right)?
'HBO will be airing All Def Comedy as planned,' the network said in a statement. 'However, Russell Simmons will not appear in the new series, and we will be removing his name from the show moving forward. Simmons is pictured center wearing a black hat at a panel discussion?
'The series is a platform for promising and upcoming comedians, and we do not want to deprive them of an opportunity to showcase their talents to a national audience.'?
HBO also told the news site that they 'have no other projects with Russell Simmons'.?
Simmons, 60, has been in partnership with HBO on several occasions since the early 90s when he co-created Def Comedy Jam with director Stan Lathan.
Def Comedy Jam premiered in 1992 and its final episode was in 1997. The series helped discover some of the greatest comedians the world has seen including, Chris Tucker, Kevin Hart, Dave Chappelle, Martin Lawrence, Bernie Mac and Jamie Foxx.?
The new season of All Def Comedy premieres on HBO on December 1. Simmons created the show to help promising and upcoming comedians get discovered. ?
On Thursday, Sidney Lumet's daughter Jenny, an actress and screenwriter, accused Simmons of forcing her into having sex with him after allegedly locking her in his car and taking her to his apartment against her will in 1991.
That is the same year in which former model Keri Claussen Khalighi claims she too was assaulted by Simmons in the same apartment as Brett Ratner watched.
In an open letter to Simmons that was published by,?The Hollywood Reporter, Lumet said she was prompted to share her accusations after reading Simmons' denial of the other woman's claims.?
Jenny Lumet, the 50-year-old daughter of the late film director Sidney Lumet, claimed on Thursday that Simmons forced her into having sex with him in 1991 when she was 24 and he was ten years older. She is pictured with her father in 2008. Sidney died in 2011?
She says she was 24, and he 10 years older, when he forced himself on her after locking the doors of his chauffeur-driven car once she was inside it.??
They had both been at the Manhattan restaurant Inodchine, dining separately, when she says he lured her to the vehicle by offering her a ride home.?
Lumet, the daughter of legendary film producer Sidney and Gail Buckley, whose grandmother is the iconic jazz singer Lena Horne, was familiar with Simmons having socialized with him in groups for years beforehand.?
On the night of the alleged encounter, she said he switched from the bubbly and friendly person she knew and said 'no' twice after she gave his chauffeur her address.??
Once at his apartment building, she says he led her into an elevator where he 'pressed his body and mouth' on to her as they ascended to his apartment.?
There, she says he led her into his 'dark' bedroom where the alleged attack took place.
'It was dark, but not pitch dark. You closed the door.?At that point, I simply did what I was told.?There was penetration. At one point you were only semi-erect and appeared frustrated.?
'Angry? I remember being afraid that you would deem that my fault and become violent. I did not know if you were angry, but I was afraid that you were,' she said.
She then described how Simmons told her to 'turn on to' her stomach before he ejaculated.?
'I desperately wanted to keep the situation from escalating. I wanted you to feel that I was not going to be difficult. I wanted to stay as contained as I could.
'You told me to turn over on my stomach. You said something about a part of my body. You did not ejaculate inside me,' she said.?
Afterwards, she claims she got herself a taxi and went home.?
In response to her claims on Thursday, Simmons released a statement to say he was stepping down from his business empire.
Lummet and Simmons worked together on the 1988 film Tougher Than Leather which was put together to promote Run DMC's latest album at the time. She is seen above with Joseph Simmons, aka Rev Run, Russell's brother who was the star of the group
It reads: 'I have been informed with great anguish of Jenny Lumet's recollection about our night together in 1991. I know Jenny and her family and have seen her several times over the years since the evening she described.?
'While her memory of that evening is very different from mine, it is now clear to me that her feelings of fear and intimidation are real.
'While I have never been violent, I have been thoughtless and insensitive in some of my relationships over many decades and I sincerely and humbly apologize.
'This is a time of great transition.
'The voices of the voiceless, those who have been hurt or shamed, deserve and need to be heard.?
'As the corridors of power inevitably make way for a new generation, I don't want to be a distraction so I am removing myself from the businesses that I founded.'?
Simmons said his companies will be taken over and controlled now by 'a new and diverse generation of extraordinary executives'.?
'I will convert the studio for yogic science into a not-for-profit center of learning and healing.?
'As for me, I will step aside and commit myself to continuing my personal growth, spiritual learning and above all to listening.'?
Lumet grew up in famous film and music circles. She is pictured with her late father in 1985. Her grandmother is the jazz singer Lena Horne who Simmons told her he was a fan of?
Simmons (center in white t-shirt) was already a star in 1991 thanks to the popularity of Run DMC and the success of his music label Def Jam, which he founded with Rick Rubin. He is pictured with Fab Five Freddy and Red Alert US in 1990, a year before the alleged sex attacks
RUSSELL SIMMONS STATEMENT ?
I have been informed with great anguish of Jenny Lumet's recollection about our night together in 1991. I know Jenny and her family and have seen her several times over the years since the evening she described. While her memory of that evening is very different from mine, it is now clear to me that her feelings of fear and intimidation are real. While I have never been violent, I have been thoughtless and insensitive in some of my relationships over many decades and I sincerely and humbly apologize.
This is a time of great transition. The voices of the voiceless, those who have been hurt or shamed, deserve and need to be heard. As the corridors of power inevitably make way for a new generation, I don't want to be a distraction so I am removing myself from the businesses that I founded. The companies will now be run by a new and diverse generation of extraordinary executives who are moving the culture and consciousness forward. I will convert the studio for yogic science into a not-for-profit center of learning and healing. As for me, I will step aside and commit myself to continuing my personal growth, spiritual learning and above all to listening.
Lumet said the pair had known each other for years and that Simmons gently pursued her before the alleged attack.?
She claimed he told her he had a 'thing for a little yellow girl', an apparent reference to her mixed-race.?
She also claims that he once sent her 250 balloons with a note which read: 'Please baby, please baby, baby, baby, baby.'?
Former Victoria's Secret model?Keri Claussen Khalighi (pictured in 1995) also claims she was sexually assaulted by the hip-hop legend
On the night in question, she says she innocently accepted his offer of a ride home but that the trip quickly turned sinister.?
The driver, she says, did nothing to help her.?
'You?offered me a ride to my home. I said, sure.
'At no time that night did I say: 'Russell, I will go home with you'. Or, 'Come home with me.' Or 'I will have sex with you.' Or 'I have the desire to have sex with you.'?
'I got into the car with you. The driver began to drive. I assumed you knew where I lived, because you had sent me 250 balloons, but I gave the driver my address on 19th Street and 2nd Avenue.
'You said to the driver: 'No.' I didn't understand, so I said: 'Russell?' I said, again, to the driver: '19th Street.'
'Again you said to the driver: 'No. '
'Then, the car doors locked. It was loud. The noise made me jump.'?
The pair continued to run in to one another at events including the Oscars for years after the alleged attack.?
According to Lumet, they were cordial and 'nodded' at one another but never spoke of the sexual encounter again.?
She said she was suddenly compelled to address it this month after watching him deny the claims of others who say he has abused them.?
'I can't leave those women twisting in the wind. Maybe the recalling of this incident can be helpful. I don't know if it can.?
'In this very moment, I feel a pang to protect your daughters. I don't think you are inclined to protect mine,' she said. ?
Earlier this month, former Victoria's Secret model Keri Claussen Khaligli described how she was allegedly raped by Simmons in his apartment while Hollywood figure Brett Ratner watched.?
Simmons (above with girlfriend Hana Nitsche earlier this month) said he would focus on 'personal growth' and 'healing'?
SIMMONS' $340MILLION EMPIRE ?
Media and money
All Def Digital - Online comedy channel
Global Grind - News and entertainment website
Narrative - Advertising agency
Def Jam Enterprises - Marketing and advertising for fashion, film, gaming and mobile
Def Pictures - TV and films?
Def Jam Comedy?
Rush Card - credit card?
In 1999, Simmons sold his stake in the Rick Rubin-founded Def Jam records for $100million. ?
Clothes, health and yoga
Tantris - Yoga and lifestyle brand with clothes and studios?
Celsius - health drink?
Argyleculture menswear and eyewear, American Classics eyewear
In 2004, Simmons sold Phat Clothing, the apparel company he founded which included his wife Kimora's label Baby Phat along with his label Phat Farm, to retail giant Kellwood for $140million.
Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation?
Diamond Empowerment Fund
Foundation for Ethnic Understanding???
She said the three had been at dinner and retreated to Simmons apartment afterwards.?
In response, Simmons issued a strongly worded denial.?
'I completely and unequivocally deny the horrendous allegations of non-consensual sex against me with every fiber of my being,' he said. ?
Simmons has three children with ex-wife Kimora Lee Simmons. He has been in a relationship with 31-year-old German model Hana Nitsche for five years.?
At the time of his alleged attacks on Lumet and Khalighi, he had not yet met his first wife.?
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