Olivia Munn is urging Hollywood bosses to put a zero-tolerance policy in place to help combat sexual misconduct in the entertainment industry.
Last month (Nov17), Munn recounted her own experience with sexual misconduct in an expose for the Los Angeles Times, in which she called out moviemaker Brett Ratner for reportedly masturbating in front of her in 2004 after the then-aspiring actress delivered a meal to his trailer on the set of After the Sunset.
She also claimed Ratner had approached her at a 2010 party and confessed he “came” over magazines featuring her photo.
Munn had previously written about the alleged encounter in her 2010 book, Suck It, Wonder Woman!: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek, although she did not identify Ratner at the time. The director later dismissed the star’s charges, but boasted in an interview that he had “banged her” – claims she subsequently denied.
In a new article for Entertainment Weekly, Munn explains she came forward with her story because she is dismayed by how alleged abusers are able to stay in power, while victims are often shamed for coming forward.
“My experience with Brett Ratner enforced in me the belief that I deserve to be here and that I should be able to reach for my dreams without being harassed and abused, no matter what economic or social position I find myself in,” she writes.
“In our world today – and it’s not just Hollywood, it’s the same for girls and women all over the world who have survived sexual abuse and/or harassment – abusers don’t usually get in trouble unless the victim is broken first, because the violating act alone is not damaging enough to spark society’s outrage,” she continues. “It’s a marathon towards self-destruction in order to gain credibility and a vicious circle of victim-blaming. When people ask how these men in powerful positions were able to hurt so many people for so many years, I look to the people at the top and ask those questions.”
Munn stands firm in her belief that the issue is about the abuse of power, and people in high positions have a responsibility to lead the fight against such inappropriate behaviour.
“We can use this moment to create a lasting shift,” she adds. “We should create a zero-tolerance policy with actionable consequences for sexual assault and any other forms of abuse. Heads of studios, bosses, and CEOs should enforce equal pay because continuing to pay us less perpetuates a bias that women are inferior…”
“If you’re already at the top or on your way there, please don’t hold us back anymore,” she writes. “Instead, stand with the rest of us – because the glass ceiling that hangs over me is the same glass ceiling that will hang over your daughters, sisters, nieces. Together, our voices are mighty, powerful, and earth-shaking. We’re strong. We’re not afraid to call each other out – and we’re not afraid to call you out anymore either.”