'One Tree Hill' and 'Royals' Showrunner Accused of Sexual Harassment

Lawrence Kim
November 14, 2017

Now, in a show of support for Audrey, the female cast and crew of One Tree Hill - including lead stars Sophia Bush, Hilarie Burton and Bethany Joy Lenz - have written a letter "to stand together in support of Audrey Wauchope and one another". To use terminology that has become familiar as thesystemic reality of sexual harassment and assault has come more and more to light, Mark Schwahn's behavior over the duration of the filming of One Tree Hill was something of an "open secret".

Schwahn is now the showrunner for The Royals, which airs on E!. That's why you're here - he wants to f**k you, ' she tweeted.

Now, in their open letter, Sophia, Hilarie and castmate Bethany Joy Lenz have been joined by crew members all accusing Schwahn of treating them in ways that were "traumatizing" and "downright illegal". "Also, I'm irate and miserable and everything else that years after the fact I don't feel safe to have the capacity to do anything genuine about various things it is by all accounts happening everywhere on this town".

One of the CW's most successful showrunners has been called out by the cast and writers of one of his biggest hits on November 11. "Furthermore, a couple of us were placed in positions where we felt physically hazardous".

The writer also claimed, "The day the studio lawyers came to give the sexual harassment seminar many of us had pointed questions we were going to ask". Though Rachel didn't name Mark, it's clear he's the one she's referring to based on the fact that she said it was her first show, and she wrote another tweet praising the men on Cougar Town, another show she worked on.

The through line in all of this was, and still is, our unwavering support of and faith in one another. Unfortunately, they were unable to be more vocal in chastising him during the time that the show is still filming because they were told that "coming forward to talk about this culture would result in our show being canceled and hundreds of lovely, qualified, hard-working, and talented people losing their jobs", something that they were not willing to risk.

"This is not an appropriate amount of pressure to put on young girls". E!, Universal Cable Productions and Lionsgate Television told Variety they are "monitoring the information carefully" and "are committed to providing a safe working environment in which everyone is treated respectfully and professionally". We have worked at taking our power back, making the conventions our own, and relishing in the good memories.

The cast and crew members who wrote the letter supporting Wauchope said they are all "deeply grateful for Audrey's courage".

In an unprecedented show of unity on a television series or movie, almost all of the show's core cast-as well as some crew members-have shown support for the female cast and crew after the letter was published. "I will always be a champion of a fair, respectful workplace and encourage any human to make their most earnest attempt to preserve the balance necessary for us all to live and work together safely".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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