Thandie Newton was abused on casting couch

Thandie Newton Thandie Newton was abused on a casting couch when she was a teenager. The 40-year-old actress says she is still scarred by the "horrific" incident, which involved an unnamed male director when she was just 18 and trying to get her big break. She said: "It was a screen test. There were two other people in the room - the director and the casting director, who was a woman. The director asked me to sit with my legs apart - the camera was positioned where it could see up my skirt - to put my leg over the arm of the chair. Before I started my dialogue, [I was told to] think about the character I was supposed to be having the dialogue with and how it felt to be made love to by this person. I was thinking, 'This is so strange, why would I need to do that?' But this is the director, there is the casting director, [it] must be normal. I'm 18 years old, you know, and I'm thinking this is, obviously... I was in a protected... there were boundaries." Three years later, she discovered the video was being shown by the director - whom she refuses to name - to other showbusiness figures. Thandie - who now has two children with husband Oliver Parker - told CNN International journalist Max Foster: "It turned out the director used to show that video late at night to interested parties at his house - a video of me touching myself with a camera up my skirt." Thandie chose to speak out about her abuse as part of an international campaign to end violence against women, One Billion Rising.

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Comments & Discussion

  1. Janice • February 15, 2013 @ 12:11 PM

    I’m sick of women not naming these perverts. I read Shirley Temple’s autobiography and she says when she was a teen, she was raped by a bigwig in the movie industry but wouldn’t name him. Why? She has nothing to lose, she’s not looking for acting roles and he’s probably dead by now.

  2. Karen Brown • February 15, 2013 @ 6:13 PM

    I agree – name the director in People magazine – bust these guys…Shame on them for taking advantage of a committed female actor…What a creep! It would ruin him – because I wouldn’t support his movies with my hard earned $$$$…..

  3. Chris Topher • February 16, 2013 @ 3:53 AM

    Maybe these directors are not being named because it never happened. Even if it did happen, Thandie should have known better and got up and left and reported it. But she cared more about her career and was desperate to get it started. Rape and abuse is wrong but I’m tired of all this end violence against women crap. How about some equality and end violence against women AND men?

  4. Na • February 16, 2013 @ 9:07 AM

    Um, you do know that naming them could lead to lawsuits, no future job offers, etc.
    I’m sure it’s all politics just like everything else.

  5. Jo • February 16, 2013 @ 8:37 PM

    Well I would hope it Would lead to lawsuits, if true….

  6. C-Dub • February 18, 2013 @ 9:44 PM

    Such an abuse of power -if- it did actually happen. Curious why this guy hasn’t sold the video to make $…isn’t that what everyone does? Especially if he has the original and is apparently showing it to friends.

  7. papa shady • April 5, 2016 @ 3:23 PM

    It is common lately for celeb ladies to use their body and beauty to make money instead of education and professional careers.celeb ladies. Do not mind climbing the fame ladder using sexual favours to gain whatever promotion,position and finance they so dire want and need…so this makes it easier for them to be vulnerable and easy target for men in higher positions and financially stable.

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