Oscars chief being investigated for sexual harassment

Academy President John Bailey is subject to an internal investigation following three charges of sexual harassment, accorting to US media reports on March 16, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 17 March 2018
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Oscars chief being investigated for sexual harassment

LOS ANGELES: The president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the body which hands out the Oscars, is being investigated for sexual harassment, US media reported on Friday.
The trade publication Variety and CBS News said the Academy immediately opened an investigation after receiving three harassment claims against John Bailey on Wednesday.
In response, the Academy issued a statement saying that it “treats any complaints confidentially to protect all parties.”
The group’s membership committee “reviews all complaints brought against Academy members according to our Standards of Conduct process, and after completing reviews, reports to the Board of Governors.”
It added: “We will not comment further on such matters until the full review is completed.”
In December, the Academy adopted a code of conduct for its members.
Bailey, 75, a cinematographer whose credits include “Groundhog Day” and “The Big Chill,” was elected to a four-year term as head of the Academy in August.
He followed Cheryl Boone Isaacs, an African-American woman who had led the charge to increase racial diversity in the Academy. Her tenure included dealing with the social media-driven #OscarsSoWhite campaign and accusations of racism within the Academy.
Bailey’s brief tenure has been marked by the birth of the #MeToo movement started by actress Alyssa Milano and which went global, highlighting accusations of sexual abuse.
Harvey Weinstein, whose studio Miramax was behind hits such as “Shakespeare In Love” and “Pulp Fiction,” was expelled from the Academy in October following accusations of sexual harassment and abuse by dozens of women.
At a February lunch for this year’s Oscar nominees, Bailey promised the Academy would adopt a “greater awareness and responsibility in balancing gender, race, ethnicity, and religion.”
“The fossilized bedrock of many of Hollywood’s worst abuses are being jackhammered into oblivion,” he said.


International Hay Festival set to arrive in the UAE

UAE’s Ministry of Tolerance announced Wednesday that the event will start on Feb. 24. (Supplied)
Updated 29 min 57 sec ago

International Hay Festival set to arrive in the UAE

DUBAI: For its first edition in the Arab World, the international Hay Festival will arrive in the UAE on Feb. 24, at Abu Dhabi’s Manarat Al-Saadiyat and other venues across the city, UAE’s Ministry of Tolerance announced Wednesday. 

The four-day event will host workshops, artistic performances, new technology discovery, storytelling and many more art and literature-related activities.

The festival will take place at Abu Dhabi’s Manarat Al-Saadiyat and other venues across the city. (Supplied)

Since 1987, the Hay Festival has launched 125 events globally, attracting more than 4.5 million people to events in 30 locations. 

The festival, originally based in Whales, will bring together writers and thinkers from different cultures and backgrounds to discuss ideas, share knowledge and host conversations. 

The festival aims to spark imagination and curiosity, from children and young literature enthusiasts to seasoned readers.

The Minster of Tolerance Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al-Nahyan said: “Hay Festival Abu Dhabi will be an important initiative of our Year of Tolerance, which celebrates the legacy of our nation’s founder, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, whose tolerance enabled the success we enjoy as a country today.”

Minster of Tolerance Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al-Nahyan announced the news in a press conference in Abu Dhabi. (Supplied) 

 “(The event) is not only about bringing the festival to Abu Dhabi, but taking Abu Dhabi to the world,” the international director of the Hay Festival, Cristina La Roche, told Arab News.

Cristina La Roche is the international director of the Hay Festival. (Supplied)

The award-winning Syrian poet Adonis is said to be attending the festival and will celebrate his 90th birthday with the participants. “He is one of the world’s greatest poets. He is unquestionably influential not only in Arabic but to poets all around the globe,” Peter Florence, director of Hay Festival, told Arab News.   

Peter Florence is the director of Hay Festival. (Supplied) 

Other award-winning novelists like the Saudi Muhammed Hasan Alwan and the Omani Jokha Alharthi will also attend the event. 

Conversations will take place in multiple languages and all sessions will be live translated into Arabic and English. Tickets to all sessions will be free for those in full time education.