In the past month, at least three women have come forward with allegations against director and screenwriter Cary Joji Fukunaga including accusations of inappropriate behavior and grooming. Now a new report from Rolling Stone details more accusations of Fukunaga’s alleged misconduct ranging from questionable interactions with 18-year-old actresses to persistently pursuing women on set in a way that “bordered on workplace harassment.”
Fukunaga, 44, is known for his work on No Time to Die and HBO’s True Detective. Recently, he has been touted as a feminist after saying James Bond was “basically” a rapist in earlier films and needed to be surrounded by more strong female characters. His attorney provided a statement denying all the allegations made in the Rolling Stone piece, telling the publication, “There is nothing salacious about pursuing friendships or consensual romantic relationships with women.”
Here’s what we know so far.
In 2021, actress Raeden Greer said Fukunaga tried to pressure her into doing nude scenes for True Detective.
The allegations first surfaced in October 2021, when the Daily Beast published an article claiming actress Raeden Greer was fired from HBO’s True Detective after refusing to go topless. “It was disheartening. It felt bad,” Greer told the Daily Beast. “And now, Cary is out here talking about his female characters — it’s like another slap in the face over and over and over. Yes, he has had an illustrious career — that was a star-maker for him, and what happened to me? Nobody cares.”
Actress Rachelle Vinberg claimed Fukunaga began grooming her shortly after she turned 18.
In early May, Vinberg posted a series of Instagram Stories detailing her experience with Fukunaga in response to his recent comments on the looming Supreme Court ruling on abortion, which he called “a war against women’s rights.” Vinberg said the director “literally doesn’t care about women” and “only traumatizes them.”
“I spent many years scared of him,” she said of Fukunaga, whom she claimed she met on the set of a Samsung commercial in 2016 when she was 18 years old. Fukunaga would have been around 40 at the time. According to Vinberg’s account, he started sharing details about his romantic life and asking about hers. Before and during their romantic relationship, she said, he would ask her to tell people she was his sister so he didn’t “look like a predator.” She also claimed Fukunaga’s employees know he pursues younger women, and one reached out to her to discourage her from talking about their relationship.
In a statement his lawyer provided to Rolling Stone, Fukunaga denied Vinberg’s claims of grooming but said they “had a very brief and consensual romantic relationship.”
Hannah and Cailin Loesch allege Fukunaga tried to pursue a relationship with them simultaneously.
Shortly after Vinberg posted her allegations, twin sisters Hanna and Cailin Loesch, who played minor characters in the Fukunaga-directed Netflix series Maniac, posted a statement on Twitlonger about their experience with the director. After working with him when they were 20, they said, the director, who was 40 when the miniseries was filmed, pursued a relationship with both of them over the course of three years. They suggested he took advantage of his power as an older and more accomplished director. Through his attorney, Fukunaga denied their claims.
Former colleagues claimed Fukunaga used his production sets as an opportunity to meet younger women.
In Rolling Stone’s report, a number of unnamed sources, including two who worked in production on the 2021 miniseries Masters of the Air, claimed Fukunaga behaved inappropriately toward younger women while on set. Four women said Fukunaga pursued them in professional settings while they were in their 20s, and one told Rolling Stone she worried that rejecting Fukunaga’s advances would negatively impact her career. “It’s a really scary thing,” she said, “when Cary is being a certain type of way with you, and you don’t feel like you can ask [him] to stop.”
Regarding the claims about his on-set behavior, Fukunaga’s lawyer said he “has befriended men and women, young and old” while filming. The attorney responded to one source’s assertion that Fukunaga “utilizes his influence in the film industry to pursue many young women,” saying, “This is simply not true. Period.”
Fukunaga’s former writing partner has spoken out in support of the women who have come forward.
After Vinberg and the Loesch sisters posted their statements, Nick Cuse, who worked with Fukunaga as a writer on No Time to Die and Maniac, called Fukunaga the “worst human being I have ever met in my life” in an Instagram Story. He said Fukunaga’s treatment of noncelebrities on set “is horrible.”
Fukunaga’s attorney has denied any wrongdoing.
“There is nothing salacious about pursuing friendships or consensual romantic relationships with women,” his attorney told Rolling Stone. “Nevertheless, because that would not fit your narrative, you conclude he has done something wrong.” Fukunaga has not personally responded to any of the accusations. The Cut has reached out to Fukunaga’s legal representation for comment and will update if we hear back.