Describing a “web of untruths and lies,” Rob Cohen has vehemently denied all the allegations of sexual assault and child molestation made against him by a TV project collaborator and his own daughter.
“I have never assaulted, raped, drugged or molested anyone,” The Fast and the Furious director told Deadline after a report was published in HuffPost earlier Saturday alleging the Hollywood veteran assaulted a 28-year old woman in a NYC hotel room in 2015, following a meeting about a potential TV pilot.
“I have never belonged to any cigar club, and certainly was never there with ‘Jane’. (Out of restraint, I won’t reveal her real name),” he declared with a reference to the pseudonym used in the initial article to protect the woman’s identity.
“I hope and pray that the thousands of people who know me, worked with me, and/or are simply fair minded people will see that this is an untrue and unsubstantiated story, which is out there due to a hateful daughter and a mother/ ex-wife,” the Alex Cross helmer Cohen added, while detailing the fractured relationship he now has with both his eldest child Valkyrie Weather and his first wife.
(READ THE FULL STATEMENT BY ROB COHEN BELOW)
In fact, the statement from Cohen includes an email from his now second ex-wife, with whom he has three other children. Their divorce was finalized in 2018. In that correspondence with the co-writer of the original story, the former spouse says Cohen “does not deserve the untrue and horrible accusations made about him.”
As Deadline reported earlier today, those accusations include the alleged rape four year ago after a business sit down and the statements that Weather made about her father earlier this year on social media. With Hollywood heavyweight lawyer Martin Singer in his corner, Cohen says his “daughter wants to destroy me.”
Before the HuffPost story went up, Singer tried to destroy the article himself with a 13-page letter that called it an “outrageous defamatory hit piece.” Despite Singer and his client’s objections, the story was posted Saturday morning.
For context — though the relationship seems long fraught — it should be pointed out that Cohen was twice awarded sole custody of his now 32-year old offspring, who is transgender, after his marriage to her mother ended in 1999 and their divorce was finalized around 2003.
The meeting that Cohen was having with the woman accusing him of assault centered on a TV project that he and Weather were developing, a transgender-based program that never came to fruition.
After Weather first unveiled her allegations of being molested by Cohen when she was a toddler, the director also denied the claims. He called them “both untrue and unimaginable” to THR. In fact, a form of the accusations had first surfaced years ago when Cohen and Weather’s mother were fighting over their divorce. The claims were put aside by the court and designated investigators due to a lack of evidence, pertinent documents reveal. Soon after, Cohen won custody of Weather in that long legal battle.
Lionized as the man who discovered the script for The Sting back in the early 1970s, Cohen has had a career as a writer, producer and director that started with Motown’s Diana Ross starring Mahogany in 1975. Having kicked-off the multi-billion dollar Fast and the Furious franchise back in 2001, Cohen’s most recent stint in the director’s chair was 2018’s The Hurricane Heist.
Here is the full statement from Rob Cohen that Deadline obtained today:
This is very painful. I have to live with the fact that my daughter, previously my son, had decided to wage a war against me. She is using her mother, which I’ve had a very bitter divorce from, and a transgender friend whom I never would have met if it weren’t for my daughter’s suggestion and request. A friend whom I knew to be a transgender, before my son told me that he is, to try and write a TV show with a transgender as the hero.
I have never assaulted, raped, drugged or molested anyone. I have never belonged to any cigar club, and certainly was never there with “Jane”. (Out of restraint, I won’t reveal her real name).
This hateful campaign that my daughter is waging against me, and by her own admission only affirmed by her mother, is why this is happening to me. This is the same mother that the court has awarded sole custody to me over twice, even though I was a single father at the time. We all know family courts don’t award sole custody to a person who molests their children.
My daughter wants to destroy me.
When she first gave the story to the Huffington Post, back in February or March, they contacted my ex-wife and the mother to my three other children. She gave them the following statement:
“Dear Ms. Schulberg,
I received your email. Even though I am a very private person, I felt it was important to reply and present a very personal and a very different perspective about Rob.
As this is a personal matter between a parent and a child, a child who isn’t mine, I would remain respectful and not say anything negative about anyone.
However, as a person who was married to Rob, shared a home and children with him, I would tell you without any hesitation that I don’t believe Rob has ever done any of the things he is accused of, nor is he capable of such behavior.
As I said, I am the mother to my children with Rob, and I know how much he loves them, is protective of them and how much they love him in return. I have no fears or concerns about my children or myself for that matter, being with their father and trusting them with him.
This is the only statement I will make regarding this. I feel extremely sad for Rob and I know that he does not deserve the untrue and horrible accusations made about him.
As you can tell, in this email from March, my ex-wife responded to Ms. Jessica Schulberg, who is the co-writer of this Huffington Post article. I find it extremely unfair, unbalanced and clearly a story with an agenda, rather than a balanced story with all aspects of the journalistic research represented and with journalistic integrity.
I hope and pray that the thousands of people who know me, worked with me, and/or are simply fair minded people will see that this is an untrue and unsubstantiated story, which is out there due to hateful daughter and a mother/ ex-wife.
I still pray that my daughter can find peace and happiness, so she can release herself from this web of untruths and lies, and be able to live her life fully and hate free.”