Rick Najera is out as director of the annual CBS Diversity Showcase after multiple complaints of sexual harassment lodged against him.
CBS already had investigated Najera for similar allegations earlier this year. From the network’s official statement: “In March 2017, CBS became aware of inappropriate comments made during the production of the Diversity Comedy Showcase, and remedial action was taken at that time, which the company felt was appropriate to the matter. Subsequent information has recently emerged. After looking into these reports and a discussion with Mr. Najera, he has resigned from his role with the Diversity Comedy Showcase.”
The #MeToo social media campaign and fresh awareness about sexual assault and harassment brought forward several new complaints about Najera’s comments and conduct with past participants in the CBS Diversity Showcase. Rachel Bloom wasn’t one of them, but as a star of sister network’s Crazy Ex-Girlfriend on The CW and a friend to some of the alleged victims, helped connect them to CBS HR.
Performers accepted for the 2018 showcase are wondering what this means for them.
Najera, meanwhile, through a representative reportedly was “heartbroken and confounded by deliberate and cruel defamations.” He had directed the showcase for 13 years.