After the New York Times published an explosive story detailing accusations of sexual misconduct from a number of actresses against producer Harvey Weinstein, more and more women in the industry are coming forward with their own stories involving sexism and harassment in the workplace. It's becoming clear this is a widespread problem in Hollywood, and Blake Lively has added her name to the list of victims who were on the receiving end of inappropriate conduct.
Lively's story, which she detailed to the Los Angeles Times, involves a makeup artist on the set of one of her movies.
"He was saying things inappropriately, insisting on putting my lipstick on with his finger," she told the outlet. "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."
Unfortunately, reporting this behavior to the higher-ups yielded little results. In fact, during the only time they sat down with her for a serious conversation, things took an unexpected turn.
"Finally, after three months of complaining, they called me into my trailer and said, 'We need to talk to you,'" she continued. "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.'"
It wasn't until Lively enlisted her own lawyer to deal with the harassment that anything was done about the perpetrator, who eventually was removed from the project after an investigation. However, he was still given special treatment.
"Our unit production manager wrote him a letter of recommendation because nobody wanted there to be bad blood," Lively added.
The number of women coming forward following the news is too big to ignore. This is a real problem, and Hollywood — and every other industry — needs to take notice.
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).