Cucalorus filmmakers discuss Hollywood sexual assault accusations

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Claims of sexual harassment and assault have swept Hollywood one actor, producer, and comedian at a time. It is a growing scandal that has taken over headlines across the nation.

WWAY stopped by the Cucalorus Film Festival to get insight on how those in the industry feel about the latest accusations.

“Those things happen a lot, all the time,” “She’s Got a Plan” Actor and Director, Fatima Washington said. “Did it happen to me? Yes. There are thousands of Harvey Weinstein’s right now.”

Washington is an actress and film director, she met Harvey Weinstein at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival in January. When she found out the allegations surrounding him she was upset.

“I was hurt by it really. And to see the extent of it, you know, is shocking but more so it’s so disappointing,” Washington said.

Although Washington said she was never sexually assaulted by the now disgraced film mogul, she said it happens more than you think in Hollywood.

“So it’s like, what are you willing to do? And that brings it back to “She’s Got a Plan”, would you give up everything you stand for to become something you want to be? And Isis Angelo, the main character that I play is grappling with ethics, grappling with how far will I go to make my dream come true.”

Washington, along with her co-director Corey Johnson, have a film premiering Saturday at the Cucalorus Film Festival in Downtown Wilmington titled “She’s Got a Plan.” The film sheds light on the pressure women face trying to make their mark in Hollywood.

Washington is not alone, WWAY  spoke with other actors who shared their stories about sexual harassment in the industry.

“Were there uncomfortable moments between myself and directors or people in power? Absolutely,” Actress, Tracy McMillan said.

Actor and director J.R. Rodriguez said he was raped as a young child.

“If you’re raped, mentally you’re raped every day of the rest of your life. I know, I’m a rape survivor,” Rodriquez said.

Seeing the latest controversy all over social media including the “Me Too” campaign makes Rodriguez very angry.

“When it comes down to your livelihood, your work, putting food on the table, paying your rent, you’re afraid to mention something because you may be blackballed,” Rodriquez said.

Many said the recent allegations are not that shocking but they are down right shameful.

“How much would you sacrifice of yourself to get what you always wanted. And when you get it, is it really what you wanted? That’s the sad part,” Johnson said.

If you are interested in seeing Washington’s film, “She’s Got a Plan,” it premieres Saturday at 1:00 p.m. in the Thalian Black Theater.

Categories: Entertainment, Local, New Hanover

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