Designing Women Creator Linda Bloodworth Thomason Accuses Les Moonves of Ruining Her Career
She says that he kept her from working for seven years
Linda Bloodworth Thomason, 71, wrote a searing op-ed for The Hollywood Reporter in which she claims that Moonves, 68, purposely derailed her career.
“I was never sexually harassed or attacked by Les Moonves. My encounters were much more subtle, engendering a different kind of destruction,” she said. She wrote that her career at CBS, crowned by a $50 million contract, was a smashing success before Moonves arrived at the network.
After Moonves’ exit, CBS said that the network and Moonves “will donate $20 million to one or more organizations that support the #MeToo movement and equality for women in the workplace.”
“For the past 24 years it has been an incredible privilege to lead CBS’s renaissance and transformation into a leading global media company. The best part of this journey has been working alongside the dedicated and talented people in this company,” Moonves said in a statement to Variety.
He wrote, “Untrue allegations from decades ago are now being made against me that are not consistent with who I am.”
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Bloodworth Thomason recalled the time he attended a table read for her pilot. “He sat and stared at me throughout the entire reading with eyes that were stunningly cold, as in, ‘You are so dead.’ I had not experienced such a menacing look since Charles Manson tried to stare me down on a daily basis when I was a young reporter covering that trial,” she alleged.
Bloodworth Thomason continued, “As soon as the pilot was completed, Moonves informed me that it would not be picked up. I was at the pinnacle of my career. I would not work again for seven years.”
She alleged that she repeatedly brought scripts to him, and he rejected every one. She added, “People asked me for years, ‘Where have you been? What happened to you?’ Les Moonves happened to me.”
Bloodworth Thomason alleged that an unnamed actress told her that Moonves also forcefully kissed her right after telling her that she was too old to appear on CBS. Bloodworth Thomason alleged that after parting ways with CBS officially, Moonves told her agent, “Tell her to go f— herself!”