Glorias, The: Gloria Steinmen Biopic and Rape Accusation against Oscar Winner Tim Hutton

An accusation of rape against actor Timothy Hutton, surfaced in a BuzzFeed story on Monday, raises questions about a new film in which he co-stars about the life of activist icon Gloria Steinem.

In an in-depth BuzzFeed report by Kate Aurthur and Adam B. Vary (both have since joined the staff of Variety), the Oscar-winning actor is accused of raping former model Sera Johnson in 1983, when she was 14 years old.

Hutton “completely and unequivocally” denied the accusations in the article, saying the account was “patently false and designed only to extort money from him.”

In “The Glorias,” Hutton has a supporting but highly visible role as Steinem’s father.  The film, a roving look at Steinem’s life from childhood to present day, stars Julianne Moore and Alicia Vikander as incarnations of the woman who played a critical role in the feminist movement of the 1960s.

Directed by Julie Taymor, the movie was screened in the official selection in January at the 2020 Sundance film festival.

It was acquired a month later by indie distributor Roadside Attractions (“Judy”), which plans to release the picture with LD Entertainment this fall.

Roadside, which is partly owned by Lionsgate, is set to begin rolling out “The Glorias”  in September. A pivotal condition of the film’s sale was a theatrical release prior to November’s presidential election, backed by national speaking engagements with Steinem and the cast. The film depicts Steinem’s personal struggles with sexual harassment in the workplace, and widespread misogyny in her battle to promote feminism.

The accusations against Hutton fly in the face of what Steinem has come to symbolize in American culture, and could potentially derail the film’s promotional plans.

In “The Glorias,” Hutton shares scenes with three actors portraying Steinem at different ages: nine-year-old Ryan Kiera Armstrong, 14-year-old Lulu Wilson and Vikander. Hutton’s Leo Steinem is portrayed as a wandering antiques dealer with aspirations to produce and mount live entertainment. He is prominently featured in the film’s first act, and in later scenes with Vikander.

The only other unreleased project Hutton has in the works is the dystopian drama, “Y: The Last Man.” The series is set up at FX, and recently saw the departure of lead actor Barry Keoghan, who was replaced with Ben Schnetzer. FX ordered a second pilot shoot under director Melina Matsoukas. FX had no immediate comment.

Hours after the BuzzFeed report on Hutton, Fox announced it would not renew the actor’s series “Almost Family,” which suffered in the ratings and had been shuffled on the network’s schedule from Wednesday to Saturday.

The fallout from sexual misconduct accusations can directly impact production, sometimes resulting in additional costs and negative press.

After numerous accusations against Spacey, including two accounts of inappropriate advances and sexual relationships with minors, he was dropped from Scott’s “All the Money,” in a frantic last-minute shoot that cost a reported $10 million. He was also written out of the final season of Netflix’s flagship drama series “House of Cards.”