Kate Upton on Speaking Out About Sexual Harassment: ‘Now We Have a Platform’ (Exclusive)

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Kate Upton is opening up about her decision to come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against Guess co-founder Paul Marciano, and how it feels to be a part of the growing #MeToo movement.

ET caught up with Upton at the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit2018 launch party at the Magic Hour Rooftop Bar & Lounge in New York City on Wednesday, and the 25-year-old supermodel reflected on the positive feedback she's received.

"I appreciate the support so much. It's such an exciting time for women because now we have a platform to not allow the norm to be the norm anymore," Upton shared. "I'm just really excited about this movement and am happy to create a platform for other women to speak their stories as well."

Speaking with Time last week, Upton claimed Marciano sexually harassed and assaulted her in July 2010, after the first day of shooting on a Guess lingerie campaign. She alleged that the fashion mogul sexually harassed and assaulted her, before reportedly harassing her in person and through text messages over the course of several months.

Upton also accused Marciano of being "outwardly rude and degrading" during her final shoot with Guess in 2011, allegedly calling Upton "disgusting" before making insulting remarks about her weight.

Marciano released a statement to Time flatly denying Upton's accusations, which he called "absolutely false" and "preposterous."

According to Upton, however, the only way to create a safe environment for young women in the modeling industry, and the country's cultural climate in general, is for those who have been the targets of sexual harassment and abuse of power to keep raising their voice.

"I think it's women continuing to speak out and not accept what was the norm [that will create change]," she explained to ET on the SI Swimsuit red carpet. "And to expect being treated in a professional way in a professional setting."

As Upton receives a great deal of support for sharing her story, she has also been gearing up for the launch of this year's Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. For her spread in the magazine, she posed on the idyllic beaches of Aruba -- but the shoot itself wasn't quite as tranquil as the photos would suggest. 

On Tuesday, Sports Illustrated posted a behind-the-scenes video from the shoot showing Upton posing on some rocks in the surf before getting knocked over by a massive wave.

"Sports Illustrated is always an adventure for me. They love to put me in extreme situations, and it's probably because I love doing it," Upton joked to ET. "But I survived the fall, so all is good."

While the fall itself is painful to watch, Upton said it looked worse than it really was.

"I walked away with only two scratches, which I felt very lucky about, and I got a massage the next day," she said. "[But] rocks are rocks no matter how beautiful the island is, so it always hurts when you fall on them."

The 2018 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue is available now.

For more on Upton and her decision to share her story as part of the #MeToo movement, watch the video below.


Kate Upton Says She Has a 'Sense of Relief' Since Coming Forward With Sexual Misconduct Allegation

Kate Upton and Ashley Graham Slip Back Into Bikinis for 'Sports Illustrated Swimsuit' Issue

Watch Kate Upton Get Wiped Out by a Huge Wave During Her 'Sports Illustrated' Photo Shoot

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