Updated to include Tweet from Barabara Crampton.
Updated to include Tweet from Phil Nobile Jr (FANGORIA Editor-in-Cheif)
Updated to include Tweet from Chelsea Stardust.
Updated to include statement for Dallas Sonnier (Cinestate CEO)
Updated to include Tweet from Preston Fassel
Some truly disturbing news was just sent our way today. On May 8th, The Dallas Morning News reported that an up-and-coming genre producer Adam Christopher Donaghey has been charged with sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl several years ago on the set of A Ghost Story in 2017.
The 39-year-old filmmaker was taken into custody April 27th and was released early the next day after posting a $25,000 bond. As a condition of his release, he may not have any contact with his accuser, her family, or any minor. It is still unclear as to when this case might go before a judge; we will keep updates on the site as the story progresses.
Donaghey was a frequent collaborator with Cinestate and FANGORIA as well as being deeply involved in the Dallas film community. His recent work includes several highly anticipated films from promising filmmakers, many of which we have covered here in recent months.
Dallas Morning News quoted Cinestate CEO Dallas Sonnier as saying: “He is not associated with the company any longer,” adding “May God have mercy on his soul,” in response to the allegations. Sonnier also informed the publication of Donaghey’s resignation from all current and future projects with the company.
With such serious allegations leveled at a filmmaker this well known in the community, it is hard to understand how a story like this could go unreported. It is thanks to filmmakers and friends of the site, Jovanka Vuckovic and Micheline Pitt, who brought this to our attention today.
While Donaghey does not have a prior criminal record, reading through this Reddit thread shows a handful of users claiming this behavior was known amongst those he worked with.
I believe this woman is telling the truth, and within minutes of seeing the accusation towards Adam posted on Facebook, I was on the phone with him accepting his resignation from all of our projects that he worked on. He is aware that we have removed his credits from the movies that are still in post.
This specific incident happened years ago before our company ever worked with him on a movie, and I am not familiar with the details of the situation. I want to see justice served in whatever form our legal system deems necessary. Adam deserves due process, but mostly, I hope this woman finds closure and peace at some point in her journey. She has our support if she ever were to need it.
I take personal responsibility and shoulder the burden of Adam’s association with us. I am an open book. There are no secrets here, nothing to hide. I see every painful charge on Reddit. I feel confident in the way I handled each challenge that comes our way. But I am open to criticism, feedback and ultimately positive change.
I chose to sit back this week, not make any comment, and listen to you all. I see every hurtful judgment on Twitter that tend to come from folks I’ve never even met. The idea that I’m going to excommunicate anyone or seek vengeance or silence anyone or pull the industry “to the right” is fanatical. Did you all know that I give all of my publications full editorial control, and I give all my filmmakers final cut? Since CINESTATE is here to stay, I have a request to make to those most angry at us on social media — instead of continuously hating on us, please consider reaching out and getting to know us – whether it be to contribute to our websites or our magazine, or to work on one of our movies. There is a brand for many different walks of life.
We are a great company, full of really great people and great intentions. When you make as many movies as we do, or launch as many brands as we have, you will never satisfy everyone. We are not the victim here, nor are we guilty of anything beyond trying our hardest and being imperfect in our efforts at times. This is a sad moment, and I am reflecting. I want to be a part of the solution moving forward.
We will keep our readers posted as the story develops. If you have credible information to share or have previously collaborated with Donaghey and wish to issue a statement please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.