The Fear is Real

The Harvey Weinstein story is close to my heart. In May 2016 I shared my story of sexual harassment on the set of the movie Election.

When I first shared my story men and women who worked on the set reached out to me PRIVATELY, to share their stories and say they were impressed with my ability to share what happened.

They would not come out publicly to support me. You know why? They were afraid they’d never work again.

DEADLINE.com and KTLA reached out and interviewed me about the harassment. Guess how many stories were published? NONE.

Makes a person sit back and think, what happened to the investigative report Jenna Susko? Why didn’t KTLA ever broadcast her story on sexual harassment?

Deadline.com was quick to reach out, but as none of the others who were harassed and belittled on set would go on the record I believe they didn’t have enough sources to confirm or deny my story. I reached out to a freelance writer for Variety and was told if I never pressed charges there was no story.

Being thrown on top of a table and dry humped in front of the crew is not funny. It’s what happened to me. What made George think he could do it? Because I was quiet about it, stunned into silence and no one stopped him. Instead they laughed.

Being systematically belittled and humiliated is not the price to pay for work—right? Guess what? It’s the price thousands of people pay every day, men and women, to earn a paycheck. It shouldn’t be a fact.

I was surprised at how many tens of thousands of times my story, from over a decade ago was shared. It was heartwarming to see how those I worked in the past reach out and question if they too, had ever crossed the line. I was offered jobs on sets promising me that it wouldn’t happen on their set. I was sent apologies from men who didn’t know me, saying sorry for the things I endured by the hands of other men.

You know who never reached out? George or Alexander— the two men who harassed, assaulted, and belittled me. If so many strangers could find me, why didn’t they?

Are they afraid to apologize? Is the admission of guilt shame they can’t own? Is their lack of remorse proof that they still engage in this deviant arrogant behavior? Are they afraid I want money? You know what I want? An apology. I want them to own it, say sorry and never do it again. I’d like them to do it publicly. I would accept a private apology, but think being honest about how wrong they were warrants a sincerely public apology. My story isn’t going away.

My story of abuse and harassment used to be linked to Alexander’s Wikipedia page and Google searches. But guess what? He’s got a movie coming out and any trace of his bad behavior is erased. My story is no where to be seen near his name. How much money did that cost him?

Then I find it interesting to see, how often harassers work together. Look how many times Alexander and George worked together.

Crew members knew what happened to me. No one stood up for me. They too, were enduring a shit show. They are still afraid. I’m so proud of Rose McGowan. I love her fierce voice.

But I know there’s more than one snake in the hen-house. I know the world is full of Harveys and I hope they don’t use him as a sacrificial lamb and ignore the hard work of changing a culture. Movies can be made without the bullshit of subjugating women and men.

Here’s to the people brave enough to speak. If you’re scared— know you’re not alone. You matter. It wasn’t your fault.

IT HAPPENED TO ME: An Oscar Winner Bullied Me So Badly That I Quit the Film Industry

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