We all know that sexism is well and truly alive in Hollywood, all you have to do is look at the gender pay gap and representation both on and off screen to see that. However, sexism is more than just numbers and wages, it’s also a real and oppressive force that actresses like Lena Dunham and executives like Girls co-showrunner Jenni Konner know too well.
You might know that both Dunham and Konner started the feminist newsletter Lenny Letter in a bid to raise the lid and discuss important topics. And in this week’s edition, the pair have revealed a startling, shocking, and disappointing story about how sexism permeates the entertainment industry.
After wrapping the last season of Girls, Dunham, Konner, and fellow cast and crew members decided to head out to grab some drinks and food to celebrate.
Recalling the incident in a post in the latest Lenny Letter, Konner explained how while out their group bumped into the crew from another TV show. Konner said that within five minutes of them being there, Dunham was apprehended by a male director and producer who cornered her and showed her “an iPhone photo of a mutual friend with a cock next to her face, ostensibly a still from his TV show but shown at a completely inappropriate time.”
Things didn’t improve from there. The un-named exec then requested that Dunham help him pressure an actress into getting naked on his show.
Okay, so this is GROSS.
Konner went on to say that the male co-workers shrugged off the incident, defending the male exec by saying he was drunk.
Konner then explained why she felt that she couldn’t wait until an interview to tell this “anecdote.”
We totally applaud Konner for speaking out about this obscene and vile incident. Just because Lena Dunham acts or behaves a certain way in Girls or on social media, it doesn’t mean that she (and therefore other women) is willing to coerce someone else to get naked against their will. Similarly, it’s never really okay to show someone an unsolicited dick pic, even if it is a still from TV show. AND, it’s never okay to make assumptions about women because of the way they present themselves.
Hopefully with more and more women speaking up about sexism and misogyny, it will, as Konner suggest, put an end to outdated and hideous behavior.
Girls returns to HBO for its sixth and final season next year.