Why Warner Bros. could be affected by the sexual misconduct allegations against Brett Ratner

  • Brett Ratner is a partner in RatPac-Dune Entertainment.
  • The company has financed many Warner Bros. hits, including “Wonder Woman” and “It.”
  • The industry is waiting to see if the Ratner sexual misconduct allegations will affect WB/RatPac-Dune.

In the wake of an LA Times story that went live on Wednesday, in which six women accused director-producer Brett Ratner of sexual misconduct, Warner Bros. now needs to do full damage control, while its parent company is close to being acquired by AT&T.

Ratner not only has a first-look deal with the studio, but is also a partner in RatPac-Dune Entertainment, one of the biggest financiers of Warner Bros. titles, including recent releases “Wonder Woman” and “It.”

The $US450 million deal in 2013 between WB and RatPac-Dune, which includes Ratner, Steven Mnuchin (who has since left to company to become US treasury secretary), and silent investors like the Koch brothers, has benefitted the studio over the years (“Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” “Mad Max: Fury Road”) — and especially this year. Along with “Wonder Woman,” which was the second-highest grossing movie of the year domestically and the highest-grossing summer movie, RatPac-Dune also helped finance its potential awards contender “Dunkirk,” directed by Christopher Nolan, and the fall’s biggest hit so far, “It.”

Wonder WomanWarner Bros. PicturesBrett Ratner’s company helped finance ‘Wonder Woman.’

The company is also involved in Steven Spielberg’s anticipated new movie coming out next year, “Ready Player One,” which is also being released by Warner Bros.

Now the industry will wait and see whether these allegations toward Ratner will affect WB/RatPac in the same way the Weinstein Company suffered following the sexual assault and harassment allegations against its founder, Harvey Weinstein. In that case, movies stripped Weinstein’s name from credits, and upcoming releases have scrambled to get out of deals with TWC. The company will not release any more movies the rest of 2017.

A WB spokesperson told Business Insider, “We are aware of the allegations in the LA Times and are reviewing the situation.” Business Insider contacted RatPac-Dune for comment but did not get an immediate response.

Warner Bros. is also a major chip in Time Warner being acquired by AT&T, a deal that is in a preliminary agreement with a pricetag of $US85 billion.

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