LOS ANGELES (CBSLA/AP) – The president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has been cleared of wrongdoing in a sexual harassment investigation which began earlier this month.
AMPAS announced Tuesday that it concluded its review of a misconduct allegation against film academy president John Bailey and determined that no further action is required.
In a statement, the film academy also denied reports that it had received multiple complaints against him. It stated that it had only received one on March 13.
The academy said Bailey will remain in his position, which he has held since August.
The academy says the membership and administration committee and its sub-committee took his response, the claim and corroborating statements into account in its review. Outside counsel was also consulted, including from Ivy Kagan Bierman who is an adviser to the Anita Hill-chaired Commission on Eliminating Sexual Harassment and Promoting Equality in the Workplace.
The committee’s unanimous conclusion was also backed by the academy’s Board of Governors.
This comes after Bailey himself sent a memo sent to Academy staff, which was obtained by Variety Saturday, in which claimed that he is accused of inappropriately touching a woman while in a transport van, on a movie set, more than a decade ago.
“That did not happen,” Bailey wrote bluntly.
According to a report from Variety on March 16, AMPAS received three harassment claims against Bailey. However, in his memo, he alleges that the Academy only received the one.
“The media reports describing multiple complaints made to the academy about me are false and have served only to tarnish my 50 year career,” Bailey wrote.
Bailey, 75, is a cinematographer and occasional director. His credits include “Groundhog Day,” ”The Big Chill” and “As Good as It Gets.”
“While I cannot undo the damage of having a false narrative leaked to the press I expect the committee will undertake its obligation to review this matter faithfully,” Bailey wrote. “Because I know the facts, I expect they will conclude that there is no basis to take any action against me. While there have been well documented instances of individuals in this industry not treating women with respect, I am not one of them.”
The investigation comes as the academy has sought to make the fight against sexual misconduct a central goal after the wave of revelations beginning in October that brought down movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and spread throughout the industry.
Bailey was two months into his presidency in October when Weinstein’s membership was revoked. Prior to Weinstein, only one other person has had their film academy membership withdrawn, and that was for loaning out awards screeners.
The academy adopted its first code of conduct in December, which allowed for members to be disciplined or expelled for abuse, harassment or discrimination.
In its statement Tuesday, the academy said it will refrain from discussing the specifics of the claim out of respect for the confidentiality of the claimant and Bailey.
The organization’s goal, the statement said, is “to encourage workplace environments that support creativity, equality, and respect.”
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)