J-Law Says She Was “Punished” For Standing Up To A Verbally Abusive Director

jennifer lawrence punished director

During this year’s actress roundtable organised by the Hollywood Reporter, shining star of the entertainment industry Jennifer Lawrence revealed her own difficult experiences on an unnamed film set, in the context of discussing the epidemic of sexual harassment and intimidation in the movie industry.

The roundtable, which also featured Emma Stone, Saoirse Ronan, Mary J. Blige, Jessica Chastain and Allison Janney, jumped right into talking about the current climate that’s seen so many women come forward with stories of harassment and abuse.

Lawrence responded to the question of whether the culture of abuse can change by saying that the endemic sexual harassment in Hollywood needs to be uncoupled from a warped understanding of masculinity before women can actually be respected.

Then she went on to share her own experience:

I’ve had this happen: I finally made the decision to stand up for myself, and then I went to go to the bathroom at work and one of the producers stopped me and was like, “You know, we can hear you on the microphone, you’ve been really unruly.” Which was not true, but basically my job was threatened because the director said something fucked up to me and I said, “That’s sick, you can’t talk to me like that,” and then I was punished, and I got afraid that I wasn’t going to be hired again.

And I was called difficult and a nightmare. I think a lot of people aren’t coming forward because they’re afraid they’re not going to work again.

You need to be able to say, “This is wrong,” and have somebody do something about it, instead of saying, “Oh it’s wrong? Well, you’re fired.”

It’s not clear which director Lawrence is referring to, nor which movie she was shooting when the incident occurred, but it seems pretty clear that it’s another damning indictment of the culture of silence in the entertainment industry that she not only was afraid she’d lose work back when it happened, but is still uncomfortable with sharing details.

The whole session is well worth reading, and you can check out an edited clip of Lawrence’s contribution below.