Dawsons Creek star says he was groped and the victim of inappropriate sexual conversations, as he voices support for women who have spoken out against Harvey Weinstein
James Van Der Beek has revealed his own experiences of sexual harassment at the hands of older, powerful men in Hollywood, as the allegations around Harvey Weinstein continue to engulf the film industry.
Van Der Beek made the claims on Twitter in a series of posts that offered support to the women who had spoken out against Weinstein. For anyone judging the women who stayed silent, read this for perspective. Also for anyone brushing off harassment as boys being boys, he wrote, linking to an article from fashion website The Cut that detailed a writers hotel-room experience with a powerful man.
The former Dawsons Creek actor went on to recount his own personal experience of abuse, though he did not name names. Ive had my ass grabbed by older, powerful men, Ive had them corner me in inappropriate sexual conversations when I was much younger, he wrote. I understand the unwarranted shame, powerlessness & inability to blow the whistle. Theres a power dynamic that feels impossible to overcome.
Van Der Beek added that what Weinstein is being accused of is criminal. What hes admitted to is unacceptable in any industry. I applaud everybody speaking out.
Weinstein has been accused of sexual abuse and harassment by a number of women since the publication of a New York Times investigation into his behaviour last week. A further investigation published by the New Yorker on Tuesday alleged that the Miramax founder had raped three women, while a number of others have separately alleged mistreatment, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Cara Delevingne and La Seydoux. Weinstein has unequivocally denied the allegations.
The allegations against Weinstein have prompted other figures in Hollywood to speak out about their experiences of abuse. On Tuesday former NFL player and actor Terry Crews alleged that he was groped by an executive while at an industry function in 2016, while One Tree Hill star Hilarie Burton claimed that she was groped by actor Ben Affleck during an episode of MTVs TRL in 2003. Affleck has since apologised for acting inappropriately towards Burton.