Legendary actor Dustin Hoffman is apologizing for “anything I might have done” on the set of a TV movie three decades ago, where a former female intern alleges she was sexually harassed.
As more and more women and men step forward to tell their stories of alleged harassment and abuse at the hands of some of Hollywood’s biggest power players, Anna Graham Hunter published a guest column in The Hollywood Reporter Wednesday sharing personal accounts when she worked on the set of Hoffman’s “Death of a Salesman” TV film more than 30 years ago.
In her column, Graham admits she’s “conflicted” about revealing the alleged harassment because she still loves the actor’s work and said he apologized. Graham is a Los Angeles-based writer “currently working on a memoir, ‘Anyone Who Comes Close: A Year of Tinder, Divorce, and Love in the Age of the Internet,'” according to her column.
“Yes, I loved the attention from Dustin Hoffman. Until I didn’t.” https://t.co/xPYxhgZagS
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) November 1, 2017
Hoffman, now 80, told THR in a statement that “I have the utmost respect for women and feel terrible that anything I might have done could have put her in an uncomfortable situation. I am sorry. It is not reflective of who I am.”
Hunter was 17 and in high school when she began interning back in 1985 on the project.
“I loved the attention from Dustin Hoffman. Until I didn’t,” she writes, citing that by the second week on set, Hoffman started to ask about her sex life. She said she witnessed him talk about women’s breasts and even got unwanted physical contact from the actor.
“Today, when I was walking Dustin to his limo, he felt my ass four times,” she recounts from diary-like passages written when she was 17. “I hit him each time, hard, and told him he was a dirty old man.”
Hunter even questioned if she would have been fired from the production if the producer saw her hit the show’s star. She said she spoke up about a month into working on the production, and Hoffman then “apologized and said he would stop.”
“After that he was so nice to me I was shocked … I guess he felt really bad,” she admitted.
In her last week on set, Hunter wrote, “No one is 100 percent good or bad. Dustin’s a pig, but I like him a lot.”
She went on, “Mostly though, my heart aches. It aches for the teenager who was so thrilled to join a movie star’s party that she gave him a foot rub even though she didn’t want to, even though she tried to protest she wasn’t good at it. My heart aches for the awkward virgin with the bad hair who had only been kissed three times in her life, laughing as the man her father’s age talked about breasts and sex. I want to weep that she found this charming.”
She added, “Yes, he was gross. But he could also be sweet and wanted me to like him. Which I did … I still like watching him onscreen. I owned the VHS of Tootsie for a long time and watched it over and over in my 20s and 30s, even as I remembered telling him how disappointed I was, that I expected better of him after that movie.”