WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — Heather Graham says she was so frustrated by sexism and Hollywood and the dearth of female perspectives onscreen that she made a movie about it.
She thought showing her experiences onscreen would be the only way to be heard in a system that favoured the powerful and silenced the powerless. But that was before the flood of sexual misconduct allegations surfaced against Harvey Weinstein and other Hollywood power players.
“My only recourse was writing and directing a movie about it because I thought it wouldn’t change, but now it is,” Graham said Tuesday. “I really hope that it changes in a meaningful way.”
Graham told guests at Women in Film’s sexual harassment panel Tuesday that she was inspired to share her own experiences with Weinstein after so many women came forward. She said she met with Weinstein in the early 2000s to discuss possible film roles when he implied that she could have her pick if she had sex with him.
“It’s scary to speak out but, I just thought how can I call myself a feminist and not?” she said. “These other women are so brave and I want to be with them.”
Graham said the rash of allegations and the seriousness with which they’re received reflects a cultural shift.
“I think that people that had these bad things happen to them felt shame, and I think now we’re rethinking it,” she said. “And we’re thinking, no, the shame is with the predator, not with the victim.
She will release her film “Half Magic” next year.