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Sir Ian McKellen: some men are wrongfully accused of sexual misconduct

British actor Sir Ian McKellen, speaking about rampant sexual misconduct in show business, recalled a time when actresses traded sexual favors for roles in films and expressed regret that some men are being wrongfully accused of sexual misconduct.

McKellen, star of “Lord of the Rings” and “X-Men”, was speaking at Oxford Union about his activism for LGBTQI rights when an audience member asked him to comment about the abuse of power in Hollywood.

“Of course, people taking advantage of their power is utterly reprehensible, wherever it happens,” McKellen replied, adding: “People must be called out and it’s sometimes very difficult for victims to do that.”

“I hope we’re going through a period that will help to eradicate [abuse] altogether,” he said.

McKellen went on to describe his experiences in the theater world during the early 1960s, appearing to suggest that some women were willing to have sex with directors in order to secure a role.

He said: “From my own experience, when I was starting acting in the early 1960s, the director of the theatre I was working at showed me some photographs he got from women who were wanting jobs – they were actors. Some of them had, at the bottom of their photograph, DRR — ‘directors’ rights respected’. In other words, if you give me a job, you can have sex with me. That was commonplace from people who proposed that they should be a victim. Madness. People have taken advantage of that and encouraged it and it absolutely will not do.”

“I assume nothing but good will come out of these revelations,” McKellen then added, continuing: “Even though some people get wrongly accused — there’s that side of it as well”.

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See his comments below.

Widespread criticism of Sir Ian McKellen’s remarks

McKellen’s remarks reached a wide audience after the Daily Mail published an article suggesting that “women are partly to blame for showbiz sex scandal.”

Twitter erupted with widespread condemnation of McKellen’s remarks.

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https://twitter.com/RaeRaeAnnax/status/942979559129075712

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Others come to McKellen’s defense

Others, however, have come to McKellen’s defense, claiming that the Daily Mail ran a misleading headline.

https://twitter.com/renegadecut/status/942928373730377728

 

What do you think of McKennen’s contribution to the dialogue? Let us know in the comments.

READ THIS: Maria Reynolds: The woman in America’s first political sex scandal

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Written by Justin Brown

I'm Justin Brown, the founder of Ideapod. I've overseen the evolution of Ideapod from a social network for ideas into a publishing and education platform with millions of monthly readers and multiple products helping people to think critically, see issues clearly and engage with the world responsibility.

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