Amid criticism that victims waited decades to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment, Mira Sorvino opened up about her decision to come forward.
The “Mighty Aphrodite” actress told the New Yorker that the film producer propositioned her in 1995 in a Toronto hotel room.
“He started massaging my shoulders, which made me very uncomfortable, and then tried to get more physical, sort of chasing me around,” she told the magazine.
She also revealed that he showed up at her apartment in New York City a few weeks later and only left when the actress said her boyfriend was on his way.
“At the time, I told people close to me, and tried to confide in a female employee at Weinstein’s company, Miramax. Her reaction was as though I was suddenly radioactive for daring to bring it up, which gave me little encouragement,” Sorvino wrote in a column for Time.
“Some time later, I heard another similar story, but worse and more disgusting than mine. Yet I had no idea that the abuse was so widespread, and in some cases, so long-term for the victims.”
Despite a fear of “retaliation, not only professional but the safety of (her children),” Sorvino said she wanted to help corroborate the stories of the other alleged victims.
Women who have accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment and assault
“We live in a culture in which sexual harassment and rape are rife, part of the power dynamic between men and women in the workplace,” she wrote.
“That my silence could be complicit in its continued thriving, possibly putting other young girls and women (and boys and men) in danger in Hollywood and beyond, was not something I could live with.”
Sorvino is one of more than a dozen women to accuse Weinstein of sexual harassment or assault.
Among the accusers are Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Judd, Rose McGowan and Cara Delevingne.
“The atmosphere of impunity for predators who see it as their right to create climates of sexual intimidation, workplaces, campuses or even homes which are not meritocracies but transactional spaces where in order to keep one’s job or wellbeing one must somehow endure or comply with these unlawful advances, must be shut down,” Sorvino wrote.
“Victim-shaming must be quelled, and the real evildoers called out and punished to the fullest extent of the law. We must, can and will work together to change that culture right now. I will fight so that my daughters and sons will not have to endure what I and every other generation that has come before have had to. So that all of our children’s success will not be determined by their willingness to submit to foul sexual advances, but the quality of their work and the integrity of their spirits. So that they may walk head up, unbowed, and unafraid to live their lives in freedom, solidarity and power.”