After The New York Times exposed Harvey Weinstein's sickening abuse of power, many people in Hollywood saw fit to reveal not only their encounters with the now disgraced movie producer, but also talk about the culture of sexual harassment that has been an open secret in the film industry for decades. Jennifer Lawrence, one of the most recognized actresses working today, revealed that she too was one of those affected by this toxic environment, and her previous experience continues to haunt her to this day.
During her speech at Elle’s Women in Hollywood, the latest actress to portray Mystique in the X-Men franchise recounted a humiliating audition where she had to participate in a naked line-up for a role.
"A female producer had me do a nude line-up with about five women who were much, much thinner than me. We are stood side-by-side with only tape covering our privates. After that degrading and humiliating line-up, the female producer told me I should use the naked photos of myself as inspiration for my diet."
When the actress voiced her concern to one of the producers present at the audition, he agreed with her, but not for the reasons she was hoping for. The unnamed producer “didn’t know why everyone thought she was so fat" because - in his words - Lawrence was "pretty fuckable." This made Lawrence feel trapped, because she had "let [herself] be treated a certain way because [she] felt [she] had to for [her] career."
Ever since becoming one of the biggest names in filmmaking following the success of The Hunger Games and netting numerous awards and nominations, Lawrence has been using her fame as a platform to promote female empowerment in Hollywood. Her advocacy for body positivity even landed her in a feud with Joan Rivers, after the star of mother! called out Fashion Police for judging people based on unreasonably high beauty standards.
"There are shows like the Fashion Police that are just showing these generations of young people to judge people based on all the wrong values and that it’s OK to point at people and call them ugly or fat."
Though Lawrence herself was not a victim of Weinstein, she found it "oddly unifying" to learn that she wasn't the only well-known actress who had a painful story about sexual harassment to share.