I’m told CAA partner Kevin Huvane is throwing a belated birthday party on Saturday night for recently released from prison Joe Francis, the scandalous founder of Mantra Films Inc, which produces those disgusting Girls Gone Wild soft-porn video and DVD series which have prompted so many complaints that women and even underage girls were filmed without their permission. UPDATE: *In addition I’m told Huvane along with his posse of friends use Francis’s Mexico vacation compound in Punta Mita almost every Xmas and New Years as well as Easter. When Huvane’s not having his own parties he parks his very special clients there. So some see the birthday party as a payback.*
I’ve confirmed that Francis is not a CAA client. But it’s not only Francis’s professional behavior that’s controversial, but also his personal behavior. You may remember this article from the August 6, 2006 issue of the Sunday magazine of the Los Angeles Times by Claire Hoffman in which she described an incident in which Francis “humiliated” her by pinning her to the hood of a car and twisting her arms hard behind her back (so hard she feared he’d break them) while he pushed himself against her and shouted – apparently demonstrating his 2003 arrest in Florida. Hoffman claimed that “the pressure he applied was so intense that hours later, my arms were covered in red hand marks.”
There also have been many accusations leveled against Francis by women and even underage girls alleging he sexually exploited and abused them and even worse. And then there are the charges of tax evasion, business fraud, drug trafficking, and on and on. Given all this, it can only be deemed surprising that Huvane, because he is prominent in a talent industry where perception is everything, would have anything to do with this guy, much less throw him a birthday bash. Not only does Huvane represent some of the top actresses in Hollywood, including Julia Roberts, Nicole Kidman, Sarah Jessica Parker, Renee Zellweger, Sandra Bullock, Meryl Streep and Glenn Close, but many of these women are feminists to one degree or another. Kidman, in fact, is the Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Fund for Women and just this week spoke out in favor of UNIFEM’s “Say NO To Violence Against Women” campaign to raise public awareness for the subject.
I alerted CAA today that I was writing about this, and the agency did not deny or explain Huvane’s involvement with Francis. Huvane had no comment. Instead, a source at the agency thought it was “weird” this would be a story for me.