Fresh off of The Big Sick, actress Zoe Kazan has a lot of fun anecdotes from set. However, there's also a darker side to the entertainment industry, and she opened up about it to The Guardian. According to the 33-year-old, women in Hollywood face a ton of sexual harassment while making movies, and often feel helpless to do something about it.
"There’s so much sexual harassment on set," the Ruby Sparks actress told the outlet. "And there’s no HR department, right? We don’t have a redress. We have our union, but no one ever resorts to that, because you don’t want to get a reputation for being difficult."
Kazan herself has faced this harassment, remembering that a producer once asked her if she "spat or swallowed."
"He was also paying my check and then watching me from the monitor as I made out with another actor – so when he tells me I look good, it feels different,” she explained. "I was in my mid-20s at the time. I was not powerful, I did not feel I could say anything."
It's not just one experience — all women in Hollywood face this particular kind of struggle.
"I have a lot of girlfriends who are amazing actors, and many times we’ve talked about having to go into a room and give 'blowjob eyes,'" she continued. "You know, be flirty with a director or a producer,” she explained. "It’s the sense that your sexuality is somehow baked into this situation. Or there’ll be auditions where they’ll say, ‘Wear something body-conscious’ and then you’re aware that they’re checking out your body. You leave the situation feeling not good about what just happened, but you don’t really have the language for why. You feel like, if you said something, it would reflect badly on you."
Just another reason we need more women in Hollywood, both in front of and behind the camera.