National Geographic and Fox are investigating sexual misconduct allegations against Cosmos host Neil deGrasse Tyson after two more women accused the astrophysicist in an article published Thursday.
On Friday, Fox and National Geographic confirmed they are investigating the allegations against Tyson.
"The credo at the heart of COSMOS is to follow the evidence wherever it leads," National Geographic said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter. "The producers of COSMOS can do no less in this situation. We are committed to a thorough investigation of this matter and to act accordingly as soon as it is concluded.”
"We have only just become aware of the recent allegations regarding Neil deGrasse Tyson. We take these matters very seriously and we are reviewing the recent reports," Fox said in a statement to Variety.
Dr. Katelyn N. Allers, a physics and astronomy professor at Bucknell University, told Patheos she was "felt up" by Tyson during a party after an American Astronomical Society meeting in 2009. Allers said she would have reported the incident if it happened today, but the AAS did not have a system in place for reporting sexual harassment at the time.
Allers shared photos with Patheos showing her with Tyson. She said after the photos were taken, Tyson showed an obsession with her tattoo, asking if it showed Pluto. "Then he looked for Pluto, and followed the tattoo into my dress," Allers said.
The professor said she did not feel the experience could be considered assault, but it showed Tyson was capable of "creepy behavior."
Ashley Watson, a former Tyson assistant, told Patheos she quit her job because of his "inappropriate sexual advances." She claimed she worked for him for several months and showed "predatory tendencies" by trying to persuade her into having sex.
Watson also claimed Tyson sometimes made "misogynistic comments" and had a list of "overweight actresses" on his phone.
Watson told Patheos she told at least one supervisor about her experiences with Tyson, and hoped it would stop Tyson from hiring more female assistants. They allegedly understood Watson's decision, but told her she should say she quit working for Tyson because of a "family emergency," Watson claimed.
In a 2014 blog post, musician Tychiya Amet accused Tyson of drugging and raping her when they were students at the University of Texas in Austin. Amet also spoke with Patheos earlier this this month and said she tried to publicly accuse him during a 2010 event in California.
Tyson first hosted a new edition of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey in 2014 for PBS. Fox and National Geographic ordered a second series, which was scheduled to debut next year.0comments
Tyson, 60, came to national attention when he hosted PBS' NOVA ScienceNow and was awarded the National Academy of Sciences' Public Welfare Medal. He has made frequent appearances on shows like The Big Bang Theory, Mars, The Simpsons and Family Guy as himself. He also had a cameo in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. As recently as this week, he appeared on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.
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