Like any other denizen of the internet, I’ve been hearing stories and allegations and rumors about Joss Whedon since back in the ‘aughts, when he allegedly fired Charisma Carpenter for being pregnant during Angel’s fourth season. This has always made his self-appointed role as genre fiction’s “feminist” kingpin laughable, and utterly hypocritical. Now he’s supposedly under investigation for allegedly abusive behavior on the set of Justice League, something actor Jason Momoa claims Warner Bros. is trying to cover up.
On Monday, actor Jason Momoa, who plays Aquaman in DC’s comic book franchise, wrote on Instagram: “THIS SHIT HAS TO STOP AND NEEDS TO BE LOOKED AT @ray8fisher AND EVERYONE ELSE WHO EXPERIENCED WHAT HAPPEN UNDER THE WATCH OF @wbpictures NEEDS PROPER INVESTIGATION.” The actor claimed that reports stating he was in talks to voice Frosty the Snowman for a prospective Warner Bros movie were meant to distract from the larger story of “Ray Fisher speaking up about the shitty way we were treated on Justice League reshoots.”
In August, Variety confirmed that WarnerMedia had launched an investigation into claims made by actor Ray Fisher about the “gross, abusive, unprofessional, and completely unacceptable behavior” on the set of Justice League in 2017. Fisher first tweeted the accusations on July 1, roping in producers Geoff Johns and Jon Berg as the people who “enabled” Whedon’s behavior.
Later that month, Fisher alluded that something was underway to look into the set’s work environment. On August 20, Fisher then tweeted that it took “5 weeks of interviews with various cast/crew” for WarnerMedia to launch an “independent third party investigation” into the “toxic and abusive work environment.” By September 5, Fisher tweeted that Warner Bros. was attempting to “discredit” him after the studio released a statement in which it alleged that Fisher had “declined to speak to an investigator.” Refuting this, Fisher released between his team and SAG-AFTRA following his conversation with the investigator in August. Then, on September 8, Momoa also posted an Instagram Story which read: “#IStandWithRayFisher.”
The workplace negligence seems to go beyond WarnerMedia failing to respond nimbly to the cast’s complaints. Yesterday, Fisher also alleged that the independent firm hired by the studio has “conveniently [sic] avoided contacting key witnesses who gave damning statements to WB HR.” These statements and interviews, Fisher claims, “implicated former and current top-level executives.”
This is also not the first time Whedon’s private actions have conflicted with his purported public persona—that of the feminist everyman behind beloved genre fiction like Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Firefly. In 2017, his ex-wife Kai Cole detailed a series of manipulations Whedon exhibited in their marriage; she said that he using her as a shield from criticism while cheating on her with “needy, aggressive young women.” Yes, that is a direct quote from Whedon.