Live Nation Executive Heather Parry Put on Leave Amid Abuse Allegations
Live Nation Entertainment has placed Heather Parry, president of film and television productions, on a leave of absence in response to former employees’ allegations of workplace abuse. The move comes six months after 10 employees filed HR complaints against Parry, Variety reports, and two days after a current Live Nation employee posted a since-deleted letter on the company’s Twitter account calling Parry an “abusive monster.”
“At Live Nation we pride ourselves on having an open, accessible and inclusive culture,” a Live Nation spokesman told Spin in a statement. “We take all employee complaints seriously and have retained a third party to investigate. We have placed Ms. Parry on leave during this time.”
Variety details the allegations in a lengthy report based on interviews with 23 former employees of Live Nation and Parry’s former company Happy Madison, where she worked for 10 years as head of film. Parry joined Live Nation in 2015 and served as an executive producer of Bradley Cooper’s film A Star Is Born, in addition to producing documentaries with Lady Gaga and Diddy.
Parry stands accused of using obscene and homophobic language, disparaging black people, throwing an iPhone charger at an assistant, and regularly calling a Happy Madison receptionist fat, among other allegations. Joseph Shepherd, a former digital producer at Live Nation, said he once heard Parry grow frustrated with a black employee and say, “Black people, you can’t count on them for anything.”
Shepherd told Variety that working for Parry forced him to seek therapy for anxiety and other ailments. The assistant who said Parry threw an iPhone charger at her said Parry caused her to suffer panic attacks. Multiple former Parry assistants told Variety they cried at their desks.
Read Variety’s full report here.
Update (12/25): Through an attorney, Parry provided the following statement:
It’s unfortunate, as a woman running a new division at one of the largest entertainment companies in the world, that you can be targeted simply because of how others perceive a woman in power. To be clear, I have never been sexist, racist or homophobic. Anyone who really knows me knows that to be true.
I am dedicated to continue working with my Live Nation colleagues to maintain a safe and respectful work place. I am deeply saddened by these accusations and gossip that in no way reflect who I am, or what I truly value.
If I hurt someone, I am sorry and apologize as that was never my intention.