Director Oliver Stone has been accused of sexual assault by Carrie Stevens, a former Playboy model who says he groped her at a party about 26 years ago.
She wrote on Facebook:
I was only 22 years old. Oliver walked past me & grabbed my boob as he waltzed out the front door of a party. I still remember the cocky grin on his face like he got away with something…These douche bags are not above the law, and they should be held to the same standard as every other man. It’s common decency NOT to grab boobs, pussies (like our President does)…or any other body part of another uninvited. They should go back to preschool, because they must’ve missed the lesson… “keep your hands to yourself.”
Stevens described Stone and Weinstein as “two of a kind,” and told The New York Daily News that she probably wasn’t his only victim. “If they do it to one, they’ll do it to as many as they can get away with,” she said. (A rep for Stone did not return a request for comment from the NY Daily News about the allegations.)
It’s no coincidence her comments came shortly after Stone defended Weinstein during a public appearance at the Busan International Film Festival – she posted a link to his words with her story.
Stone had previously expressed sympathy for Weinstein, who’s just going through such a rough time right now, you guys.
I’m a believer that you wait until this thing gets to trial. I believe a man shouldn’t be condemned by a vigilante system. It’s not easy what he’s going through, either. During that period he was a rival. I never did business with him and didn’t really know him. I’ve heard horror stories on everyone in the business, so I’m not going to comment on gossip. I’ll wait and see, which is the right thing to do.
Apparently, even Stone realized pretty quickly that this was not going over well. Later in the same day, the filmmaker walked back his comments on Facebook and added that he would no longer direct the TV series Guantanamo for The Weinstein Company.
I’ve been travelling for the last couple of days and wasn’t aware of all the women who came out to support the original story in the New York Times.
After looking at what has been reported in many publications over the last couple of days, I’m appalled and commend the courage of the women who’ve stepped forward to report sexual abuse or rape.
The question that’s come up again and again about Weinstein is how he could have been allowed to carry on that way for so long, with so many women. The answer is complicated, but one major element is men like Stone.
Weinstein assaulted and harassed all those women in the same culture that let Stone think he’d get away with groping a woman at a party, and Ben Affleck think it was okay to grab journalists on camera, and Amazon Studios’ Roy Price think it’d be cool to repeatedly proposition a producer working with him, and so on.
In that context, is it any wonder that so many in Hollywood were willing to turn a blind eye to Weinstein’s misdeeds – or were unable to see that there was anything abnormal about Weinstein’s behavior to begin with?
Stone’s reaction to the scandal is revealing, too. His sympathies lie not with the literally dozens of women who were harassed, assaulted, and raped by Weinstein, but with Weinstein himself because he’s finally facing the consequences for what he did.
His original comments are all “wait and see,” “gotta hear both sides” bullshit. In his follow-up statement, he claims that being made “aware of all the women who came out to support the original story” led to a change of heart about Weinstein.
But that just raises the question of how many women need to put their own reputations and careers on the line to come forward and speak publicly before men like Stone are convinced there’s a problem.
It’s not enough to believe women when they step out en masse to reveal they were all raped by a single man. If Hollywood is serious about change, that needs to start with believing – and caring about – a single woman who says she was groped at a party.
Update: Later Friday, Patricia Arquette talked about her own experience with Oliver Stone in a series of tweets.