U.K. newspaper The Times has followed up on last week’s report on the allegations against comedian and social media star Russell Brand with some new reporting today—but this time, their focus seems to be on what was allegedly allowed by producers of Big Brother’s EFourum, a live TV show Brand hosted in the early ’00s.
Brand, who was dropped by his management company last week even as his fans rallied around him, has not directly responded to the allegations of sexual assault and abuse he faces beyond the preemptive social media statement he made last week denying that he had engaged in any non-consensual activities. On Friday, he posted another video in which he referred to his “extraordinary and distressing week” and thanked his followers “for questioning the information that you’ve been presented with.”
He also said that he now plans to use right-wing YouTube alternative Rumble as the primary platform for his video content going forward, including a promised video on Monday during which he said he would discuss a plan by mainstream networks and publications to “target, control, choke and shut down” his work as an independent media outlet.
But according to The Times, back when Brand was working within the mainstream, the expectations for his colleagues were not those for a typical workplace. According to the report, which cites an unnamed worker for Big Brother’s EFourum, “Russell would survey the room and look at which women essentially he wanted to have sex with. Then he would give the runner a piece of paper, and it would be a phone number or where to find him in his hotel room.”
According to the staffer, when she expressed her misgivings about that part of her job, the employee of show producer Endemol was dismissive. “I said to the production manager, ‘I kind of feel like a pimp for Russell. I feel like I’m getting these girls in for him to sleep with. And it feels a bit grim,'” she said. “I can’t remember their reaction. I think it was just like ‘boys will be boys.’”
Endemol has since been acquired by production company Banijay, which issued a press release last week saying that it was launching an “urgent internal investigation” following the initial allegations of misconduct. When asked by The Times about the new claims made about the set of Big Brother’s EFourum, a Banijay spokesperson said, “It is important to make clear that these are historic allegations” and that it “would be inappropriate to draw any conclusions regarding the culture based on such information.”
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