Russell Simmons Rape Accuser Addresses Oprah Abandoning 'On The Record' Documentary
Yohance Kyles (@HUEYmixwitRILEY)
(AllHipHop News) Directors Amy Ziering and Kirby Dick’s On the Record premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 25. Media mogul Oprah Winfrey was once credited as an executive producer for the documentary covering sexual assault allegations against Russell Simmons.
However, Winfrey stepped away from her connection with On the Record. She claimed to be troubled by some inconsistencies in the account of Drew Dixon, one of the alleged victims. Another Simmons rape accuser featured in the movie, Sil Lai Abrams, addressed Oprah's decision to step away from the doc.
"I was not surprised that Oprah pulled out," Abrams told Deadline. “When I learned that and the news broke accidentally… people put the pieces together and realized that the film was about Russell and Drew and other survivors. I knew there was an army that existed of Michael Jackson fans who were still very angry at her for hosting the Leaving Neverland screening."
Abrams continued, "So when Russell and 50 Cent did their social media thing, there was a population already existing that was ready to jump on the train and use this film as a way into Ms. Winfrey’s involvement as a way to tear her down."
Hip Hop artist/television producer Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson was a very vocal critic of Winfrey being associated with On the Record. 50 wrote on Instagram, "I don’t understand why Oprah is going after black men. No Harvey Weinstein, No [Jeffrey] Epstein, just Micheal [Jackson] and Russell Simmons this sh*t is sad."
Simmons, the co-founder of the Def Jam record label, also publicly addressed Oprah on Instagram. The 62-year-old businessman insisted he "passed nine 3-hour lie detector tests" and referred to the women's "stories" as "unusable." Simmons continues to deny all accusations of sexual misconduct.
While Winfrey chose not to be linked to On the Record, the OWN leader stated, "I want it to be known that I unequivocally believe and support the women. Their stories deserve to be told and heard. In my opinion, there is more work to be done on the film to illuminate the full scope of what the victims endured and it has become clear that the filmmakers and I are not aligned in that creative vision."