I want to tell you something:
I was a young actor, had just landed an agent in France and was auditioning and getting callbacks for roles from James Bond to Hannibal to Flyboys, I went in for an audition for a film by a famed French novelist, he was to direct. I aced the audition, got a callback and then got a call from my agent that he wanted to meet for a one-on-one interview to offer the lead role in the film. I called my parents, had champagne that night, this was big. He chose a very famous restaurant to hold the meeting, I was safe, I thought. So I went and he was standing in front of the restaurant and he says in French “oh so good to see you Sophie, it’s such a nice day let’s go for a walk instead” we walked through Pere Lachaise cemetery, him inching closer to me, this older, squirmy man, finding every excuse to touch me. Hold my hand. I would pull away. I knew what energy was coming my way. He then offered to have coffee at his place, I pointed to a little cafe and suggested we go there. He agreed reluctantly, mentioning that I would never make it in this industry if I had a boyfriend “lose him”.
We sit, I order orange juice, him coffee he FINALLY starts talking about the film and “my” role. His leg pinned up against mine, this tall man, pressing himself on me. Face inches away from mine, I did not move. I froze. I looked down. Him brushing his hand along my body.
“Oh sorry” I pretended to get a phone call which took me outside, I panicked and made up a story that forced me to leave. He was mad, he said that he had the scripts up in his place and that the interview was not over. This was like 3 hours after first meeting him !
I apologized, called my agent, called my “friend” who was one of the assistants in casting and would later AD for him. Recounted the story. Both of them women, told me that I must have imagined it. And not to tell anyone. Later that day I got the call that he no longer wanted me for the role. My agent told me that I would have to pretend I had no boyfriend and that I was “available” in the eyes of producers. I cried for days, with guilt that I had not “gone upstairs” with him, that maybe I WAS delusional. Excuse me, his hands grazed my chest intentionally!!!! I knew exactly what was going on. But they all made me feel guilty and wrong.
This is not just Weinstein there are many in the industry, will I say his name? No, why? I do not want to be sued for defamation. Nothing actually happened, right?
When the film came out I wondered what the actresses did to get those roles. I often wonder what he does now and what he has done to women or should I say correctly GIRLS who did not run.
Anyway, there is a problem everywhere not just in Hollywood. This is why no one came forward = fear, young, advised incorrectly, everything he did could be interpreted as accidents, shame, disbelief and defamation.
I am very grateful this light being shone on the very dark side to the industry.
Sophie Ann Rooney
Sophie is the Head Acting Coach & CEO of RAW (Rooney Actors Workshop)
A NOTE FROM THE eBOSS TEAM: We are saddened and upset that this happened to Sophie and we truly thank her for having the courage to share her story, for having the courage to stand-up for herself and for giving a voice to other girls out there. This effects all of us. Thank you Sophie.