Author and journalist Susan Braudy has gone public with accusations of sexual harassment against Michael Douglas, following the actor’s preemptive interview earlier this month about the forthcoming allegations.
Speaking to the Hollywood Reporter, Braudy discussed how, in the late ’80s, she was hired to run the New York office of Stonebridge Productions, Douglas’ production company. During her time working with him, she claims he subjected her to sexually charged comments about her appearance and his mistresses, and masturbated in front of her during a private script meeting in his apartment.
During that incident in 1989, Braudy describes how Douglas “unzipped his chinos and I registered something amiss. Still complimenting my additions to our (script), his voice lowered at least half an octave. I peered at him and saw he’d inserted both hands into his unzipped pants. I realized to my horror that he was rubbing his private parts. Within seconds his voice cracked and it appeared to me he’d had an orgasm.”
“Michael ran barefoot after me to the elevator, zipping his fly and buckling his belt,” Braudy said. “I vowed I’d never be alone with him again.”
Braudy says her working relationship with Douglas went downhill after the incident. “When he sweetly asked me to sign a confidentiality agreement, I knew Michael was preparing to fire me,” she said, describing how, with her lawyer’s guidance, she exited the company without signing a confidentiality agreement.
Appearing on the Today show Friday morning, Braudy further criticized Douglas for his alleged actions.
“He thought he was the king of the world and that he could humiliate me without any repercussions,” she said, describing how friends warned her against coming forward about the incident.
“One of my friends said you better not tell people about him,” she said. “People were frightened for me.”
USA TODAY has reached out to Douglas’s reps for comment.
The 73-year-old actor told Deadline on Jan. 10 that a former employee had spoken to THR about his alleged harassment, denying Braudy’s account before her article actually published.
“That was completely untrue,” he said about Braudy’s claims that he masturbated in front of her before firing her in retaliation. “I’d confess to anything I thought I was responsible for,” he says. “And it was most certainly not masturbating in front of this woman. This reeks.”
In a statement to THR, Douglas reiterated the denials he provided in his earlier interview, calling Braudy’s account “an unfortunate and complete fabrication.”
“This individual is an industry veteran, a senior executive, a published novelist and an established member of the women’s movement — someone with a strong voice now, as well as when she worked at my company more than three decades ago,” the statement reads. “At no time then did she express or display even the slightest feeling of discomfort working in our environment, or with me personally. That is because at no time, and under no circumstance, did I behave inappropriately toward her.”
The article notes that Braudy “provided a detailed written account of her experience with Douglas based on notes and files she kept, a timeline of her employment (including pay stubs), and three people she told of her experience who were willing to back her publicly.”
Source: Maeve McDermott, USATODAY
Photo Credit: IndieWire
Photo Credit: Potins.net