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DAYS OF SCANDALS PAST

Written by Arion on Monday, April 21 2014 and posted in Blog
DAYS OF SCANDALS PAST

It seems to me as if, for the past few days, we’ve been prompted to choose sides. Bryan Singer (director of the upcoming “X-Men: Days of Future Past”) has been sued for sexually molesting a 15 year old boy in 1998. Some consider his accuser (Michael Egan) to be a liar, and others are ready to attack the filmmaker, labeling him as a pedophile. Nevertheless, in our hastiness, we are forgetting Aristotle's law of excluded middle, and we’re letting sensationalistic press to form (or rather deform) our judgment.

Until more evidences comes to the surface, I cannot corroborate nor deny the veracity of Mr. Egan’s accusations, but regardless of the outcome of this lawsuit, Singer is now on the spotlight. After a preliminary inspection, Egan’s claims appeared to be salacious and untrue. First of all, this is a civil lawsuit, which means that even if Singer is found guilty on all charges, he is not going to be criminally prosecuted. The one and only purpose of a civil lawsuit is to obtain a reparation, id est, a monetary settlement (in this particular case, the initial amount is 300,000 dollars and an additional sum decided by the court). Creating this public relations nightmare only a month before the premiere of Singer’s new film looks extremely convenient for Egan. To hush it all up and minimize bad publicity, Singer (or anyone in his place) would probably consider paying a large sum of money before the situation gets out of hand.
DAYS OF SCANDALS PAST
RIVER PHOENIX, COREY HAIM, JONATHAN
 BRANDIS, CHRISTOPHER PETTIET
and BRAD RENFRO were sexually abused
by Hollywood pedophiles.
Suicide and accidental drug overdose
sent them all to their graves
while they were still young.

Some have pointed out that there are precedents of Singer’s misbehavior. In fact, in 1997 three teenagers who acted as extras in Singer’s “Apt Pupil” pressed charges against the director and his filming crew. The three boys said that they were not informed that they would have to be completely naked during a shower scene and that their genitals were photographed by one of Singer’s cameramen. I have studied these allegations at length and I consider them to be unsubstantiated. There were dozens of extras and only three considered something suspicious was going on; besides, all extras and their parents or legal guardians were informed of the need for nudity during the shower scene. Those who were uncomfortable or too young would appear instead on the locker room scene, wearing towels around their waists and/or underwear. Even the boys who sued Singer admitted that, when they refused to remove their underwear, they were simply relocated to the locker room.

Others have tried to smear Singer’s reputation by pointing out his preference towards twinks. Nevertheless if a 48-year-old man decides to date an 18-year-old boy, then that is his prerogative and there is nothing illegal about that. It is an “open secret” that Bryan Singer and Roland Emmerich (both openly gay directors) organize raucous parties in which hundreds of young men struggle to be selected for “private casting sessions”; and although it is morally reprehensible of them to abuse of their popularity or status as successful Hollywood directors, still there is nothing illegal about these activities.

So without any precedents of misconduct and with the opportunistic date of Mr. Egan’s accusations, I was ready to disregard this entire situation as a simple attempt to take money from Singer. However, there is a detail that I cannot overlook which confers validity to Michael Egan’s testimony: Marc Collins-Rector. As we can read in the plaintiff’s deposition, the first rape took place in an Encino mansion (the M&C Estate), property of Marc Collins-Rector, a registered sex offender who has plead guilty on multiple child molestation charges. Collins-Rector was a very successful scammer; after securing millions of dollars from investors for his “digital entertainment” company (DEN), he squandered all the money creating a nefarious pedophile ring, raping teenage boys and prostituting them to Hollywood directors and producers. When he was discovered, he quickly fled to Spain, whereupon he continued taking advantage of underage boys.

It is a fact that Marc Collins-Rector forced teenagers to have sexual intercourse with him and with powerful men from the entertainment industry. Although it can be difficult to prove that Bryan Singer was present during one of these parties, it is also a fact that Singer and Collins-Rector were, if not friends, at least acquaintances. What worries me the most, certainly, is this connection between Singer and Collins-Rector. I don't necessarily believe in being “guilty by association”, but Collins-Rector did rape young boys, and one of the victims was Alex Burton (Pyro from Singer’s first X-Men film). Alex Burton and Michael Egan were two of the plaintiffs in a 2000 suit against Marc Collins-Rector and two of his associates. 

I have read the allegations from 2000 and they are consistent with the accusations presented now in 2014. Collins-Rector organized these parties so that big shot Hollywood guys could take sexual advantage of teenaged boys, who were either drugged or persuaded to have sex after being offered roles in movies and a career in Hollywood. Egan’s lawyer, Jeff Herman, has recently filed charges of sexual abuse against powerful producers such as Garth Ancier (Disney), David Neuman (NBC) and Gary Goddard (The Goddard Group); supposedly, these men were also a part of Collins-Rector’s pedophile ring. Even if Singer proves that he neither orally copulated nor anally raped Michael Egan in the Encino parties in 1998 and in Hawaii in 2000, he will still have to explain the nature of his incriminatory connection with Marc Collins-Rector. 

The truth, however, remains unchanged. Hollywood’s scandals (sexual or otherwise) are frequent. The system of the “casting coach” was famous even in the 40s or 50s, a time in which aspiring actresses would provide sexual favors to directors or producers in order to become movie stars. However the situation here is entirely different. We are not talking about adults, we are talking about underage boys. And we are also talking about pedophilia and ephebophilia, and the heinous crimes committed by men in a position of power within the film industry.

And with power comes impunity. We have the case of Jimmy Savile, a powerful figure in the British television industry; for several decades he raped and sexually molested almost 500 children and teenagers; some of his victims pressed charges but the lawsuits did not prosper. Evidence of Savile’s debauchery only came to the surface 50 years later. In a similar venue, Victor Salva (director of “Jeepers Creepers” and other popular horror movies), sexually molested a 12-year-old boy and had the audacity to film it; that videotape was evidence enough to send him to jail for years, but for some reason Salva was incarcerated only for a few months and to this day continues to make movies mostly with young male actors. There are many examples that demonstrate how the law rarely applies to the rich and how money can help men to commit crimes and get away with it.

Many underage actors have been victims of sexual abuse and few have been able to survive these traumatic experiences. River Phoenix (“Stand by Me”, “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”) was sexually molested when he was only 12 years old. I can only try to imagine the suffering he went through and I can also understand why he eventually developed an addiction to illegal substances; in the end, being drugged might have been the only way to silence the pain. River Phoenix died at a young age of an accidental drug overdose.

Contemporary to River Phoenix, Corey Haim (“Lucas”, “The Lost Boys”) was also a teen idol and a superstar. However, in the set of Lucas “Haim, innocent and ambitious as he was, allowed himself to be sodomized” by a Hollywood mogul. Corey Haim was 14 years old and the man who sodomized him was 42; it is believed that Corey was abused by either David Nicksay or David Geffen (both wealthy Hollywood producers), but it didn’t end there. Corey Haim continued to be raped by a number of Hollywood big shots (one of them was rumored to be director Joel Schumacher, although these rumors in particular cannot be verified). Concurrently, another famous child actor named Corey Feldman (“The Goonies”, “Gremlins”) was also the victim of several pedophiles who were powerful figures in the film industry. At that time, many people knew what was going on, some executives would even make fun of the child stars saying things like “Oh yeah, the Coreys, everyone's had them”. I cannot imagine how anyone could survive after so much pain and suffering, but this clearly affected their lives and turned them into drug addicts. Corey Haim had many problems as a consequence of his drug addiction, and after making millions of dollars in the box office he eventually went bankrupt and died of health problems related to his drug addiction. It was a tragic loss. I really admired Corey Haim as an actor and I was devastated to find out what had happened to him as a child.

A few years later, underage actors Jonathan Brandis (“The Neverending Story II”, “Sidekicks”) and Christopher Pettiet (“Point Break”, “Boys”) started to become famous. However, it was also suggested by well-connected sources that they both were victims of sexual abuse. Christopher died of an accidental drug overdose and Jonathan committed suicide. They were both quite young when they died. It has also been said that Heath Ledger was sexually abused, but those rumors were debunked as they do not come from verifiable sources (that is why I’m not including him on this list).

Finally, talented actor Brad Renfro (“The Client”, “Apt Pupil”) was another victim of the institutionalized child abuse that runs rampant in Hollywood. Brad was allegedly raped at age 12 by Joel Schumacher but it is also possible that other directors he worked with sexually exploited him. As a consequence, he became a drug addict and eventually died of an accidental drug overdose. I considered Brad Renfro as one of the best actors of his generation, and I still remember how shocked and saddened I was when he passed away. As you can all see, this wasn’t an isolated event. This is an atrocious pattern that is systematically repeated every decade. There are many wonderful and gifted actors that share the same tragic destiny. And unless things change, Hollywood will continue to be responsible for the death of the brightest and the youngest.
________________________________________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________________________________

Considero que, en los últimos días, nos hemos apresurado al establecer ciertos dictámenes. Bryan Singer (director de “X-Men: Days of Future Past”) ha sido demandado por abusar sexualmente de un chico de 15 años en 1998. Algunos consideran que su acusador (Michael Egan) es un mentiroso, y otros están listos para atacar al cineasta, calificándolo de pedófilo. No obstante, en nuestra prisa, olvidamos el principio del tercio excluido de Aristóteles, y permitimos que la prensa sensacionalista forme (o más bien deforme) nuestro juicio.

Hasta que nuevas evidencias salgan a la luz, no puedo corroborar ni mucho menos negar la veracidad de las acusaciones del señor Egan, pero sin tener en cuenta el resultado de esta demanda, Singer está ahora bajo la lupa. Luego de una inspección preliminar, los argumentos de Egan parecían ser dolosos e inverosímiles. En primer lugar, esta es una demanda civil, eso significa que incluso si es que Singer es encontrado culpable de todo lo que se le imputa, no será procesado criminalmente. El único propósito de una demanda civil es obtener una reparación, es decir, una compensación monetaria (en este caso particular, el monto inicial es de 300,000 dólares y una suma adicional establecida por la corte). Crear esta pesadilla de relaciones públicas apenas un mes antes del estreno de la nueva película de Singer es extremadamente conveniente para Egan. Para lograr que se calle y para minimizar la mala publicidad, Singer (o cualquiera en su lugar) probablemente consideraría pagar una fuerte suma de dinero antes de que la situación se salga de control.
DAYS OF SCANDALS PAST
RIVER PHOENIX, COREY HAIM, JONATHAN
BRANDIS, CHRISTOPHER PETTIET y BRAD RENFRO
fueron abusados sexualmente por pedófilos de
Hollywood.  El Suicidio y la sobredosis  accidental
los mandó a la tumba cuando aún eran jóvenes.

Algunos han señalado que Singer tiene precedentes de conducta impropia. De hecho, en 1997 tres adolescentes que actuaban como extras en “Apt Pupil” presentaron cargos en contra del director y su equipo de filmación. Los tres muchachos dijeron que no se les informó que deberían estar completamente desnudos durante una escena en la ducha y que sus genitales fueron fotografiados por uno de los camarógrafos de Singer. He estudiado extensamente estos alegatos y considero que carecen de fundamento. Hubo docenas de extras y solamente tres consideraron que algo sospechoso estaba sucediendo; además, todos los extras y sus padres o guardianes legales fueron informados de la necesidad de desnudez durante la escena en la ducha. Aquellos que se sintieron incómodos o que eran demasiado jóvenes aparecerían en la escena de los vestuarios, usando toallas alrededor de la cintura o ropa interior. Incluso los chicos que demandaron a Singer admitieron que, al rehusarse a quitarse la ropa interior, fueron simplemente reubicados en el vestuario.

Otros han intentado mancillar la reputación de Singer al señalar su preferencia por los "twinks". No obstante, si un hombre de 48 años decide tener una cita con un chico de 18 años, entonces esa es su prerrogativa y no hay nada ilegal en ello. Es un “secreto a gritos” que Bryan Singer y Roland Emmerich (ambos directores abiertamente gays) organizan bulliciosas fiestas en las que centenares de jovencitos se esfuerzan por ser seleccionados para “sesiones privadas de casting”; y aunque es moralmente reprobable que ellos abusen de su popularidad o status como exitosos directores de Hollywood, aun así no hay nada ilegal en estas actividades.

Así que sin ningún precedente de conducta impropia y con la oportunista fecha de las acusaciones del señor Egan, estaba listo para desdeñar todo este asunto como un simple intento de quitarle dinero a Singer. Sin embargo, hay un detalle que no puedo pasar por alto y que confiere validez al testimonio de Michael Egan: Marc Collins-Rector. Tal como podemos leer en el legajo del demandante, la primera violación ocurrió en una mansión en Encino (la finca M&C), propiedad de Marc Collins-Rector, un predador sexual registrado que confesó ser culpable de múltiples cargos de abuso sexual a menores de edad. Collins-Rector era un exitosísimo estafador; después de conseguir millones de dólares de inversionistas para su compañía de “entretenimiento digital” (DEN por sus siglas en inglés), dilapidó todo ese dinero creando una nefasta red de pedofilia, violando adolescentes y prostituyéndolos con directores y productores de Hollywood. Cuando fue descubierto, huyó rápidamente a España, en donde continuó aprovechándose de jovencitos menores de edad.

Es un hecho que Marc Collins-Rector obligó a los adolescentes a tener sexo con él y con poderosos hombres de la industria del entretenimiento. Aunque puede ser difícil probar que Bryan Singer estuvo presente durante alguna de estas fiestas, también es un hecho que Singer y Collins-Rector eran, si bien no amigos, al menos sí conocidos. Lo que más me preocupa, ciertamente, es esta conexión entre Singer y Collins-Rector. No creo necesariamente que se pueda ser "culpable por asociación", pero Collins-Rector violó a chicos jóvenes, y una de las víctimas fue Alex Burton (Pyro en la primera película de X-Men de Singer). Alex Burton y Michael Egan fueron dos de los demandantes en un acto judicial del 2000 en contra de Marc Collins-Rector y dos de sus asociados.

He leído los alegatos del 2000 y son consistentes con las acusaciones presentadas ahora en el 2014. Collins-Rector organizaba estas fiestas para que lo más poderosos de Hollywood pudieran aprovecharse sexualmente de adolescentes varones, quienes eran drogados o persuadidos para tener sexo a cambio de papeles en una película y una carrera en Hollywood. Recientemente el abogado de Egan, Jeff Herman, ha presentado cargos de abuso sexual en contra de poderosos productores como Garth Ancier (Disney), David Neuman (NBC) y Gary Goddard (Grupo Goddard); supuestamente, estos hombres también formaban parte del círculo de pedófilos de Collins-Rector. Incluso si es que Singer demuestra que no hubo copulación oral ni violación anal en detrimento de Michael Egan en las fiestas en Encino en 1998 y en Hawaii en el 2000, aun así tendrá que explicar la naturaleza de su incriminatorio vínculo con Marc Collins-Rector. 

La verdad, no obstante, es inalterable. Los escándalos de Hollywood (sexuales o de otra índole) son frecuentes. El sistema del “sillón del casting” era famoso incluso en los 40s o 50s, una época en la que aspirantes a actrices proporcionaban favores sexuales a directores o productores para convertirse en estrellas. Sin embargo, la situación aquí es enteramente distinta. No estamos hablando de adultos sino de chicos menores de edad. Y también estamos hablando de pedofilia y efebofilia, y de los monstruosos crímenes cometidos por hombres en una posición de poder dentro de la industria del cine.

Y con el poder viene la impunidad. Tenemos el caso de Jimmy Savile, una poderosa figura de la industria televisiva británica; por varias décadas abusó sexualmente y violó a casi 500 niños y adolescentes; algunas de sus víctimas presentaron cargos pero las demandas no prosperaron. La evidencia de la depravación de Savile sólo salió a flote 50 años más tarde. De manera similar, Victor Salva (director de “Jeepers Creepers” y otras populares películas de terror), abusó sexualmente de un niño de 12 años, y tuvo la audacia de filmar el acto; esa cinta de video era evidencia suficiente para que lo mandaran a la cárcel por años, pero por alguna razón Salva solamente estuvo encarcelado por unos cuantos meses y hasta el día de hoy continúa haciendo películas, casi siempre con actores muy jóvenes. Hay muchos ejemplos que demuestran cómo la ley raramente se aplica a los ricos y cómo el dinero puede ayudar a los hombres a cometer crímenes y a salir impunes. 

Muchos actores menores de edad han sido víctimas de abuso sexual y pocos han sido capaces de sobrevivir a estas traumáticas experiencias. River Phoenix (“Stand by Me”, “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”) fue abusado sexualmente cuando tenía apenas 12 años. Sólo puedo intentar imaginar su sufrimiento pero lo que sí puedo entender es que eventualmente él desarrollase una adicción a las sustancias ilegales; al final, estar drogado pudo haber sido la única forma de silenciar el dolor. River Phoenix murió bastante joven de una sobredosis accidental de drogas.

Contemporáneo a River Phoenix, Corey Haim (“Lucas”, “The Lost Boys”) también fue un ídolo juvenil y una súper estrella. Sin embargo, en el set de Lucas “Haim, inocente y ambicioso como era, permitió que lo sodomizara” un magnate de Hollywood. Corey Haim tenía 14 años y el hombre que lo sodomizó tenía 42; se cree que Corey fue abusado por David Nicksay o David Geffen (ambos acaudalados productores de Hollywood), pero no fue la única vez. Corey Haim siguió siendo violado por numerosos cargos altos de Hollywood (se rumorea que uno de ellos fue el director Joel Schumacher, aunque estos rumores en particular no pueden ser verificados). Al mismo tiempo, otro famoso astro infantil llamado Corey Feldman (“The Goonies”, “Gremlins”) también fue la victima de varios pedófilos que eran figuras influyentes en la industria del cine. En ese entonces, mucha gente sabía lo que estaba pasando, algunos ejecutivos incluso se burlaban de las estrellas infantiles diciendo cosas como “Oh sí, los Corey, todo el mundo se los ha tirado”. No puedo imaginar cómo alguien lograron sobrevivir después de tanto dolor y sufrimiento, pero claramente esto afectó sus vidas y los convirtió en drogadictos. Corey Haim tuvo muchos problemas como consecuencia de su adicción a las drogas, y después de ganar millones de dólares en la taquilla, quedó en bancarrota y murió de problemas de salud relacionados a su drogadicción. Fue una trágica pérdida. Realmente admiraba a Corey Haim como actor y quedé devastado al descubrir lo que le había pasado en su infancia.

Pocos años más tarde, los actores menores de edad Jonathan Brandis (“The Neverending Story II”, “Sidekicks”) y Christopher Pettiet (“Point Break”, “Boys”) empezaron a hacerse famosos. Sin embargo, fuentes bien conectadas han sugerido que ambos fueron víctimas de abuso sexual. Christopher murió de una sobredosis accidental de drogas y Jonathan se suicidó. Los dos eran bastante jóvenes al momento de morir. También se ha dicho que Heath Ledger fue abusado sexualmente, pero estos rumores fueron desacreditados al no provenir de fuentes verificables (es por eso que no lo incluyo en esta lista). 

Finalmente, el talentoso actor Brad Renfro (“The Client”, “Apt Pupil”) fue otra víctima del abuso infantil institucionalizado que desborda Hollywood. Brad fue supuestamente violado a la edad de 12 años por Joel Schumacher pero también es posible que fuese explotado sexualmente por otros de los directores con los que trabajó. Como consecuencia, se volvió un drogadicto y eventualmente murió de una sobredosis accidental de drogas. Consideraba a Brad Renfro como uno de los mejores actores de su generación, y todavía recuerdo el impacto y la tristeza que sentí cuando falleció. Como todos pueden ver, esto no fue un evento aislado. Este es un esquema atroz que se repite sistemáticamente cada década. Hay muchos actores maravillosos y talentosos que comparten un mismo destino trágico. Y a menos que las cosas cambien, Hollywood continuará siendo responsable de la muerte de los mejores y los más jóvenes.

Originally Published at http://artbyarion.blogspot.com/2014/04/days-of-scandals-past.html


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About the Author - Arion


Arion, who is either from Chile or New York (it’s not really clear) writes a blog that the Outhouse steals on a regular basis.  Arion is by far the nicest of all the staff writers and the most well behaved only having been banned from one country.  One thing we really appreciate about Aroin is that he writes his reviews in English and Spanish and we hope someday he’ll translate this blurb for us.  We’re not so good at languages, just look at how well we write in English if you need proof.  You should bookmark Arion’s blog -  http://artbyarion.blogspot.com – and actually look at it.  There will be a quiz at the end of every month.

 


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