James Van Der Beek Says He’s Experienced Sexual Harassment in Hollywood: ‘I’ve Had My A** Grabbed’
By Rachel McRady
James Van Der Beek took to Twitter late Wednesday to express his opinions on the recent scandal involving Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein and also shared his own experience of sexual assault.
“What Weinstein is being accused of is criminal,” he began. “What he’s admitted to is unacceptable – in any industry. I applaud everybody speaking out.”
Van Der Beek, who got his start on TV in the ‘90s, then opened up about several encounters he had as a young man trying to break into the industry.
“I’ve had my a** grabbed by older, powerful men, I’ve had them corner me in inappropriate sexual conversations when I was much younger,” he wrote, not identifying anyone by name. “I understand the unwarranted shame, powerlessness & inability to blow the whistle. There’s a power dynamic that feels impossible to overcome.”
The Dawson’s Creek alum isn’t the first male star to speak out about alleged sexual misconduct in Hollywood. Earlier this week Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Terry Crews tweeted about an encounter he had while in the presence of his wife. Crews, 49, said that “a high level Hollywood executive” came up to him at a function and “groped” his privates.
"This whole thing with Harvey Weinstein is giving me PTSD. Why? Because this kind of thing happened to ME," he wrote. "Jumping back I said, 'What are you doing?!' My wife saw everything [and] we looked at him like he was crazy. He just grinned like a jerk."
Crews said he decided not to physically attack the man because of “how the whole thing would appear.”
Multiple stars have come forward since the New York Times expose accusing Weinstein of decades of sexual harassment and abuse.
Weinstein’s lawyer Charles J. Harder previously released a statement to ET following the piece:
"The New York Times published today a story that is saturated with false and defamatory statements about Harvey Weinstein. It relies on mostly hearsay accounts and a faulty report, apparently stolen from an employee personnel file, which has been debunked by nine different eyewitnesses. We sent the Times the facts and evidence, but they ignored it and rushed to publish. We are preparing the lawsuit now. All proceeds will be donated to women’s organizations."
For more on the Weinstein allegations, watch the clip below.