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Who is James Toback's wife? 38 women accuse director of being a 'serial sexual predator' in new lawsuit

The lawsuit alleges James Toback 'used his reputation, power and influence in the entertainment industry' to 'lure young women'
James Toback with wife Stephanie Toback (Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
James Toback with wife Stephanie Toback (Valerie Macon/Getty Images)

Warning: This article contains a recollection of crime and can be triggering to some, readers' discretion advised.

NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK: A total of 38 women have filed a joint lawsuit against alleged “serial sexual predator” James Toback on Monday, December 5, for sexual misconduct. In a 90-page lawsuit, the women claimed James, who made his directorial debut in 1978 with ‘Fingers', “used his reputation, power and influence in the entertainment industry” to “lure young women through fraud, coercion, force and intimidation into compromising situations where he falsely imprisoned, sexually abused, assaulted, and/or battered them”.

The lawsuit, obtained by Page Six, which was filed with a New York state court, further stated that the victims are speaking out now, in spite of the alleged abuse for the past 38 years, because of his “explicit and implicit threats of black-listing them in the industry, physically harming them, and/or even killing them if they did not comply with and remain silent about the sexual abuse they endured." James would make the women “act provocatively and perform sexual acts on him to see if they were right for the alleged role" that didn’t even exist.


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The Harvard Club of New York City is also sued for allegedly allowing “Toback’s abuse to continue unchecked”. As per the claims, “James repeatedly used his membership and affiliation with the Harvard Club of New York City to facilitate and carry out his abuse, luring his victims to the Harvard Club for meals and drinks and attacking them in the Harvard Club’s dining room, stairwells, bathrooms and hotel rooms." He was reportedly “allowed unfettered access in and around the Harvard Club” and even though several women reported him, the club apparently took no action. However, a spokeswoman for the club told The Daily Beast that Toback's membership was terminated in 2017. “Beyond that, the Harvard Club does not comment on pending litigation,” the spokesperson said.

As previously reported, accusations against Toback date back to 1989, when an issue of Spy magazine detailed how he would "hang out on the streets of the Upper West Side in New York City, and approach women." He would introduce himself as a Hollywood producer and invite women to meet him in private to discuss a role for them in one of his films. Rachel McAdams, Julianna Moore and Selma Blair, who told in an interview with 'The Talk,' "I’ve literally been afraid for 17 years of James Toback who threatened to murder me and, you know, put cement shoes on and gouge my eyes out with a Bic pen if I ever told anybody," are among the 395 women who have accused him of sexual harassment in these four decades.

Toback has denied all accusations, maintaining that he had never met any of the women, or if he had it “was for five minutes and [I] have no recollection,” states The Guardian. He is yet to be prosecuted as Los Angeles County prosecutors did not press charges against him because the allegations fell outside California’s statute of limitations.

Who is James Toback's wife?

James is married to Stephanie Kempf and has a teenage son, Andre, with her. Stephanie, who is a teacher and a writer, has not commented on the allegations raised against her husband so far. But James in 1983 said that he introduced Stephanie to actress Nastassja Kinski during the film ‘Exposed'. He claimed during an interview with Movie Line that “I introduced Stephanie and Nastassia and said to her: ‘Whatever you may hear about me or think about men in general, there will never be a situation between us.’ Without missing a beat, she said, ‘If you really mean that, I will trust you with everything.’”