Netflix defends Stranger Things creators accused of verbal abuse: 'No wrongdoing'
Netflix launched an investigation after Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer were accused of verbal harassment by a female crew member. According to the streaming studio, “no wrongdoing” had been found.
“We looked into the concern that was raised when we heard of the allegation on Thursday, and found no wrongdoing,” a Netflix spokesperson told EW in a statement. “Maintaining a safe, respectful atmosphere on set is important to us, and we know it is to the Duffer Brothers as well.”
Peyton Brown, a grip handler on Stranger Things, announced in a post on Instagram that would she quit work on season 3 after witnessing “two men in high positions of power on that set seek out and verbally abuse multiple women.” While she did not mention any names in the original post, which seems to have been deleted and reposted, Entertainment Tonight captured a screenshot from the comments section, where Brown appeared to write, “yes,” she was referring to the Duffers.
“There was yelling, there were insults, there were threats and people were even fired or forced to quit because of them,” she apparently wrote.
“We are deeply upset to learn that someone felt uncomfortable on our set,” the Duffer Brothers said in a joint statement. “Due to the high-stress nature of production, tempers occasionally get frayed, and for that, we apologize. However, we think it is important not to mischaracterize our set, where we believe strongly in treating everyone fairly regardless of gender, orientation, race, religion, or anything else. We remain totally committed to providing a safe and collaborative working environment for everyone on our productions.”
“I promised myself that if I were ever in a situation to say something that I would,” Brown wrote in her Instagram post. “I have 11.5 thousand followers who can hear me say this, TIME IS UP. Women in the film industry are POWERFUL. We will rise and we will scream from mountain tops in support of each other and I will not contribute my time, efforts, and talent to such abusive people.
“There is too much going on in this world to be regressive,” she continued. “There are too many amazing and highly respected men in respective positions of power that I have had the utmost pleasure of working beside. Those are the people I want to surround myself with. Those are the projects I want to be a part of. This industry is no longer led by a ‘few good men,’ but instead by an OCEAN of ASTOUNDING WOMEN. Enough is enough. For my sisters- Time is up.”
Season 3 of Stranger Things does not currently have a premiere date, but star David Harbour predicted to Variety that a release “probably” wouldn’t arrive “until sometime in 2019.” Netflix had refuted rumors of the Duffers departing the series, and casting announcements have already begun.
Netflix’s hit sci-fi series follows a group of kids in the '80s battling supernatural forces in Hawkins, Ind.