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With the revelations in the past week of decades of alleged sexual harassment and assault by Harvey Weinstein of women in Hollywood, many actresses are opening up with their own experiences – not just with the disgraced movie mogul, but with others in the industry.
In a story the Los Angeles Times ran Thursday, actress Blake Lively opened up for the first time about being sexually harassed by a makeup artist for three months on a project she worked on.
“He was saying things inappropriately, insisting on putting my lipstick on with his finger,” Lively said. “I was sleeping one night on location and I woke up and he was filming me. I was clothed, but it was a very voyeuristic, terrifying thing to do.”
Lively quickly reported the person to the producers on the project, but nothing was done, she said.
“Finally,” she said, “after three months of complaining, they called me into my trailer and said, ‘We need to talk to you.’ I thought, ‘Well finally, they’re going to do something about this man who I had to have touching me all day.’ And they said, ‘Your dog left a poop behind the toilet in your dressing room and our janitor had to pick it up. And this is very serious and we can’t have this happen again.'”
Lively finally took the harassment issue to her lawyer. An investigation was conducted, and the makeup artist was removed from the project, according to the LA Times. However, it doesn’t seem to have hurt that person’s career.
“Our unit production manager wrote him a letter of recommendation because nobody wanted there to be bad blood,” Lively said.
The epidemic of sexual harassment in the entertainment industry goes back to the early days of the business, and though the phrase “casting couch” – actresses advancing their careers by being coerced into sleeping with or being sexually assaulted by people with power – is thought to have disappeared with the evolution of the enlightened times we live in today, in actuality it’s just become a better-kept dirty secret.
The Weinstein scandal has revealed women (and men) in the business are still being harassed.