2017 has been a lot. There’s been just so much. One of the such much includes the somehow-news-to-people knowledge that a lot of men are horrific trashgarbage. Harvey Weinstein, of course. Devin Faraci, Harry Knowles and Andy Signore, among other men in the writing and comedy world, natch. David O. Russell, hells bells yes. And as more and more names are spoken, and they will continue to be spoken, I’m sure, this is probably going to become a series. Today in Trashgarbage Men, I want to discuss Terry Gilliam.
Yesterday, Lena Headey shared her own Harvey Weinstein experience.
She paints a horrible and disgustingly common experience shared by what now appears to be most of the women in Hollywood. It was brave and clearly difficult for her to discuss this. But aside from Weinstein, she pointedly included another man: Terry Gilliam, her director on The Brothers Grimm. Because if someone is going to pause in the middle of their sexual assault story to name a bullying director, the bullying was probably very, very bad.
But we should not be surprised by this, lest we forget this was just last year:
That’s Terry Gilliam sharing Doug Stanhope’s op-ed about his poor friend Johnny Depp and the mean bad lady who got in the way of his fists, an op-ed that included this paragraph:
But any one of my friends will tell you I always call them out on bulls—. Abusing women is bulls—. Johnny doesn’t abuse anyone. And he told me that day ahead of time that she’d pull some kind of s— like this.
Johnny Depp got used, manipulated, set up and made to look like an a-hole. And he saw it coming and didn’t or couldn’t do anything to stop it.
Of course video evidence was released shortly thereafter proving, shockingly if you’re very dumb and terrible, that it’s usually the abuser who’s lying, not the victim.
Or, perhaps more frighteningly, that they genuinely believe their behavior was OK and therefore, not abusive.
Every woman has a story about being sexually abused or harassed. And every man seems to have a story of “my friend was accused of sexual abuse by a woman who made it up.” And while I believe many of those men are lying to protect themselves and their image, many of them likely believe they were just flirting, just joking, it was consensual, yeah I hit her but she had it coming and she knew it, this movie scene where it appears a child is about to have sex with an adult man with developmental disabilities is just art.
When men are called out for this kind of behavior, the behavior itself is being called out as well and the behavior goes far beyond one man. Instead of going on the defense, look within. You might just be an asshole too.