Lena Dunham has taken another stab at Hollywood’s power players in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, revealing she was sexually harassed by a director last year (16).
The former Girls star was one of the first celebrities to attack movie mogul Weinstein after details of his alleged serial sexual harassment came to light in a New York Times expose published on Thursday (05Oct17).
Now Lena has written an article for the newspaper, revealing sexual harassment is a huge issue in Hollywood – and needs to be addressed.
“Last year, I was sexually harassed by a director of a show, not my own, and not on a set, and the response by the powers that be was to defend him, question the women ferociously and take ages before letting him go from the network,” the actress writes. “It was a move based less on his skill than on some ancient loyalty. It’s that kind of behavior that normalizes this abuse of power.”
Dunham admits that experience prepared her for the response of “Hollywood’s powerful men” to the allegations of inappropriate behavior, which have cost Weinstein his position at The Weinstein Company.
“The accusations against Mr. Weinstein, so clearly outlined and so completely horrifying, seemed impossible to dispute or ignore,” she adds. “I naively expected that the reticence that Hollywood’s powerful men have shown, the collective refusal to take sides in he-said she-said narratives, would be crushed in the face of this open secret being revealed definitively.
“The reason I am zeroing in on the men is that they have the least to lose and the most power to shift the narrative, and are probably not dealing with the same level of collective and personal trauma around these allegations.”
“But here we are, days later, waiting for Mr. Weinstein’s most powerful collaborators to say something. Anything. It wouldn’t be just a gift to the women he has victimized, but a message to the women who are watching our industry closely. They need a signal that we do not approve of the abuse of power and hatred of women that is the driving force behind this kind of behavior.”
The only leading men to speak out against Weinstein so far are George Clooney, Ben Affleck, Seth Rogen, Mark Ruffalo and Dunham’s mentor Judd Apatow, while the producer’s female collaborators Jennifer Lawrence, Judi Dench, and Meryl Streep are among those who have released statements attacking the movie mogul and applauding women like actress Ashley Judd, who spoke out about the alleged abuses they suffered at the hands of Weinstein in the Times expose.