In the age of #MeToo and #TimesUp, it seems like a new heartbreaking story about sexual misconduct in Hollywood comes out every few days. On Saturday, January 13th, 37-year-old actress Eliza Dushku opened up about her own experience. Dushku alleged that Joel Kramer, who she calls “one of Hollywood’s leading stunt coordinators,” molested her.
According to Dushku, the events occurred during the filming of the movie True Lies in 1994. She was just 12 years old, and he was 36. The actress bravely shared her story on Facebook in a moving post, which she says she was inspired to share because of the many victims of sexual assault telling their own stories.
In her Facebook post, the Buffy the Vampire Slayer actress went into great detail when describing the night that Kramer allegedly molested her. She even remarked upon how clearly she remembers every aspect surrounding the event. “I remember vividly how he methodically drew the shades and turned down the lights; how he cranked up the air-conditioning to what felt like freezing levels,” Dushku wrote.
Along with describing the immense shame that followed her after she filmed True Lies, Dushku also revealed that she has asked herself so many questions about how it happened.
Here’s Eliza Dushku’s full post.
Be warned: It includes graphic details.
Kramer responded to Dushku’s allegations, calling them “vile lies.”
He spoke with Us Magazine, denying that the events described by Eliza Dushku happened at all.
According to Us Magazine, he’s even considering taking legal action.
In her post, Eliza Dushku remarked upon how close she felt to Kramer.
She implied that his friendliness with her and her family allowed him to manipulate her as a 12-year-old. And she explained how Kramer’s friendliness on set made the events all the more confusing at the time. One of the scariest parts of Dushku’s story is the part in which she describes getting hurt on set, which Kramer also denied when speaking with Us Magazine. “I don’t remember her breaking any ribs,” he said.
James Cameron, the director of True Lies, also addressed Eliza Dushku’s allegations.
It’s definitely important to create safe ways for women to “speak up,” as Cameron said. However, of equal importance, the prevention of experiences like Eliza Dushku’s also deserves a greater effort. It’s great that Cameron believed Dushku’s allegations without questioning their veracity, though. If more people respond in that way, more women might feel comfortable coming forward with their own #MeToo stories.
Eliza Dushku has set a fearless example by naming her alleged molester.
Hopefully, her brave act will help victims of abuse who are too afraid to tell their own stories. As long as people respond like Cameron, her words could — and should — have a great impact.