Eliza Dushku claims she was molested at the age of 12 by Joel Kramer, a Hollywood stunt coordinator, while she was filming True Lies.
The Buffy the Vampire Slayer alum, 37, made the allegation in a lengthy Facebook post on Saturday, January 13, where she admitted that she had struggled with whether she should reveal the harrowing incident. She also expressed her gratitude towards the people who have admitted they were also sexually assaulted in the wake of the #MeToo movement, which gave her the “ability to speak out.”
In the post, Dushku claims that Kramer, who was 36 at the time, lured her to a hotel room in Miami after assuring her parents that he was going to take her for a swim and for sushi afterwards. Instead, the Dollhouse actress says he emerged from a bathroom naked before “he laid me down on the bed, wrapped me with his gigantic writhing body, and rubbed all over me.” When the incident was over, Kramer suggested they be careful in terms of telling anyone, but in the following weeks he grew “cold” towards Dushku and she noticed the dynamic on the set of the 1994 action film starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis had changed.
Kramer denied the allegations in a phone call with Us Weekly on Saturday, saying that he and his wife, Susan, were “taken aback” by Dushku’s claims.
“We all treated Eliza like family,” he told Us. “I don’t get it, I just don’t get the vicious outright lies. Anybody that knows me will tell you that, you know. My wife has been with me for almost 20 years, she can tell you.”
“All of a sudden she is viciously attacking me and conjuring up that I lured her into my hotel room and came out naked, I mean this is all vile lies,” he added. “I get along fine with everyone and all of a sudden if this is true why didn’t this come out then? Why was I not fired, why was I not brought up on charges, I will tell you why — because this is not true.”
Dushku, who says she told her family about what happened, challenged the superiors on the True Lies set, asking, “Why didn’t an adult on the set find his predatory advances strange — that over-the-top special attention he gave me. Fairly early on he nicknamed me ‘Jailbait’ and brazenly called me by this name in a sick flirty way in front of others … Over the years I’ve really struggled as I’ve wondered how my life might have been different if someone, any one grown-up who witnessed his sick ways, had spoken up before he lured me to that hotel room.”
As previously reported, the Bring It On actress revealed in March 2017 that she has been sober for eight-and-half years and remarked that she first dabbled with marijuana at the age of 14, saying, “I loved the first time I took a drug because I loved the way it made me feel. I loved the way it made me not feel — I didn’t have to feel.”
She admitted in her Facebook post that seeing a recent photo of Kramer with a young girl spurred her to speak up: “Years ago, I had heard second hand that Joel Kramer was ‘found out’ and forced to leave the business. I learned recently that in fact he still works at the top of the industry. And a few weeks ago, I found an internet photo of Joel Kramer hugging a young girl. That image has haunted me near nonstop since. I can no longer hide what happened.”
Kramer most recently worked as the stunt coordinator on Blade Runner 2049 and episodes of Westworld and Star Trek: Discovery.
“With every person that speaks out, every banner that drops down onto my Iphone screen disclosing similar stories/truths, my resolve strengthens,” Dushku added. “Sharing these words, finally calling my abuser out publicly by name, brings the start of a new calm.”
On Saturday, Dushku’s mother, Judith, responded to a critical comment on her daughter’s Facebook post and wrote, “I was afraid of Joel Kramer, too. And it was years later that I finally understood fully what really happened. At the time, Eliza was too scared to tell the whole story and in a way I think she protected me from knowing because she knew how frightened I was of the powerful men on the set. Her lose was the worst, but abuse can throw a wide net. I only began to understand this many years later.”
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