‘Stranger Things’ Bosses Respond to Allegations of On-Set Abuse
New rumors have emerged around Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer, as a crew member departed the series alleging the two “seek out and verbally abuse women” on-set. The Duffers have now responded, claiming the reports “mischaracterize our set.”
It was Thursday that an Atlanta-based grip named Peyton Brown published an Instagram post announcing her exit from the series, in which she noted “two men in high positions of power” had verbally abused multiple women on the Stranger Things set. Follow-up comments inquired if she was referring to creators Matt and Ross Duffer, to which she replied “yes, I am.” Brown later elaborated that “there was yelling, there were insults, there were threats and people were even fired or forced to quit because of them.”
According to Variety, Netflix investigated the matter and found no evidence of wrongdoing. The Duffer brothers did not explicitly deny any of Brown's claims, but issued a general response:
We are deeply upset to learn that someone felt uncomfortable on our set. We think it is important not to mischaracterize our set, where we believe strongly in treating everyone fairly regardless of gender, orientation, race, religion, or anything else. We remain totally committed to providing a safe and collaborative working environment for everyone on our productions.
The original post’s text, for reference:
I guess there’s no better day than #nationalwomensday to say #timesup and announce that I will not be a part of the filming of Season 3 of Stranger Things. Why, you ask? Because I stand with my sisters. I personally witnessed two men in high positions of power on that set seek out and verbally abuse multiple women. I promised myself that if I were ever in a situation to say something that I would. I have 11.5 thousand followers who can hear me say this, TIME IS UP. Women in the film industry are POWERFUL. We will rise and we will scream from mountain tops in support of each other and I will not contribute my time, efforts, and talent to such abusive people. There is too much going on in this world to be regressive. There are too many amazing and highly respected men in respective positions of power that I have had the utmost pleasure of working beside. Those are the people I want to surround myself with. Those are the projects I want to be a part of. This industry is no longer led by a “few good men,” but instead by an OCEAN of ASTOUNDING WOMEN. Enough is enough. For my sisters- Time is up. #timesup #theabusestopsnow #ontobiggerandbetter #standupforwhatsright #womenempowerment #ladygrip #sisterhood #iatsesisters #wewillbeheard #thispicsaysitall
Both Stranger Things’ closing credits and IMDb list an “H. Peyton Brown” among the show’s grips, and the Instagram account does feature several production selfies with star Millie Bobby Brown, in addition to work shots of other Atlanta-based productions like The Walking Dead. This would mark the second instance of Matt and Ross Duffer facing unusual rumors before production of Stranger Things Season 3, as another recent report claimed the pair might leave the series behind to concentrate on other projects. The brothers also faced some scrutiny in the second season, as young actress Sadie Sink confessed to some discomfort with the show’s kissing scenes, for which the Duffers allegedly pressured her to perform regardless.
In the meantime, Stranger Things 3 is due to begin production in April for a likely 2019 premiere.
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