Thandie Newton Claims She Wasn't Invited to Participate in Time's Up Movement
Considering her past efforts to advocate for victims of abuse, the 'Westworld' star says it "was very, very painful" to be shut out of Hollywood's current campaign against sexual misconduct.
It's been more than four months since Time's Up was founded in response to Harvey Weinstein's sexual misconduct scandal and the #MeToo movement. In that time, many notable names in show business have spoken out publicly in support of the organization. However, as Thandie Newton claims in a new interview, she hasn't been allowed to participate in Hollywood's campaign against harassment.
Speaking with Australia's Daily Telegraph. for a profile published on Saturday, the Westworld actress says she was hurt when she wasn't asked to take part in the movement, spearheaded by Reese Witherspoon and championed by A-listers including Nicole Kidman, Meryl Streep and Jennifer Aniston, among others.
"Even now, the Hollywood community I felt was my community, and even though I understood and had compassion for those that didn’t want to talk, at the point when Time’s Up was put together, to not be invited to be a part of it, was very, very painful," she says, adding that she "wasn't hot enough" to serve as a face for the campaign.
The actress continues, "I wasn’t mainstream enough and I wasn’t going to be at the Oscars this year, even though I am having a kind of renaissance in my career, which is kind of cool."
Years ago, before the Weinstein scandal opened the floodgates for countless women and men to share their stories of abuse, Newton spoke openly about being sexually assaulted at age 18 during an audition by an unnamed director.
"I was ostracized because I wouldn’t stop talking about it," she says. "Who wants to be the first person to say, 'This man raped me, and he is also the head of a studio, or he is a director?' That’s hard."
Newton goes on to say that her decision to speak out affected both her personal and professional relationships.
"My family were really upset by the things I was talking about because of how it made them feel and how it reflected on them," she says, also revealing that she parted ways with her former publicist after being urged to stay silent on the matter.
"But I couldn’t shut up. I felt that if there was one girl whose family was thinking about putting their child into show business, that would help them decide. That was all I cared about because I wished with all my heart that someone had done that for me," the U.K. native explains. "With all my heart, I wish someone had looked out for me."
Newton — a longtime member of V-Day, a global movement to end violence against women — says that it's been difficult to accept that she wasn't welcomed into the entertainment industry's current cultural movement.
"It’s hard for me, as someone who has been talking about it for a long time, and at the end of the day it’s only my ego that’s affected. But it’s lonely, and it continues to be lonely," she says. "I know I sound so sad but I’m in a period of adjustment at the moment. I really am, profoundly so."
Time's Up has not yet responded to The Hollywood Reporter's request for comment.