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Eliza Dushku recalls being sexually assaulted by stunt coordinator

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Kayleigh Dray
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Eliza Dushku – perhaps best known for playing Faith in Buffy the Vampire Slayer – has accused Hollywood stunt coordinator Joel Kramer of sexually assaulting her on the set of 1995 film True Lies.

Eliza Dushku was just 12 years old, she says, when Joel Kramer (then 36) molested her on set.

Writing about the encounter on Facebook, Dushku explains that she has “struggled with how and when to disclose this, if ever”.

“At the time, I shared what happened to me with my parents, two adult friends and one of my older brothers. No one seemed ready to confront this taboo subject then, nor was I,” she writes.

Dushku goes on to reveal that Kramer spent months grooming her and building her trust, before luring her to his Miami hotel room “with a promise to my parents that he would take me for a swim at the stunt crew’s hotel pool”.

“I remember how he methodically drew the shades and turned down the lights,” she writes. “How he cranked up the air-conditioning to what felt like freezing levels… [and] how he disappeared into the bathroom and emerged, naked, bearing nothing but a small hand towel held flimsily at his mid-section.”

Dushku continues: “I remember what I was wearing (my favourite white denim shorts, thankfully, secured enough for me to keep on). I remember how he laid me down on the bed, wrapped me with his gigantic writhing body, and rubbed all over me. He spoke these words. ‘You’re not going to sleep on me now, sweetie, stop pretending you’re sleeping,’ as he rubbed harder and faster against my catatonic body.

“When he was ‘finished’, he suggested, ‘I think we should be careful [about telling anyone]’”

She adds flatly: “I was 12, he was 36.”

You can read the full Facebook post below: however, be warned that Dushku describes her experience in full detail.

Jamie Lee Curtis, who played Dushku’s mother in True Lies, has praised the actress for making her story public.

Writing in a powerful essay, which was published on the Huffington Post, Curtis says that Dushku “had shared that story with me privately a few years ago.

“I was shocked and saddened then and still am today.”

Curtis continued: “Eliza’s story has now awakened us from our denial slumber to a new, horrific reality – the abuse of children.

“The truth will set us all free, that freedom will bring a new ability to call out abuse and, when that abuse occurs, to have swift and consistent action, so that no one again will have to wait 25 years for their truth to be heard.”

Kramer has denied all allegations of sexual misconduct, calling Dushku’s accusations “atrocious lies” in a statement to Vanity Fair, although he did confirm that he and some of the True Lies crew had taken Dushku swimming and for a sushi dinner.

“All I can say is nothing sexually inappropriate ever happened,” he said.

Images: Rex Features

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is editor of Stylist.co.uk, where she chases after rogue apostrophes and specialises in films, comic books, feminism and television. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends. 

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