Björk Opens Up About Sexual Harassment She Experienced While Working With a Danish Director; Lars Von Trier Denies It’s Him

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Photo: FREDRIK SANDBERG/AFP/Getty Images

Adding her voice to the growing number of women publicly discussing their experience with sexual harassment, abuse, and assault in the wake of Harvey Weinstein’s sexual-abuse scandal, Björk took to social media Sunday to reveal that she, too, has been sexually harassed in the workplace. While shooting a film, she rejected advances made an unnamed Danish director, the musician says. Afterward, the director took it out on the singer. “I became aware of that it is a universal thing that a director can touch and harass his actresses at will and the institution of film allows it,” she revealed in a Facebook post. “When I turned the director down repeatedly he sulked and punished me and created for his team an impressive net of illusion where I was framed as the difficult one.”

According to the Dancer in the Dark star, the fact she isn’t an actress by trade allowed her the freedom to reject the director’s treatment of her outright. “Because of my strength, my great team and because I had nothing to loose [sic] having no ambitions in the acting world, I walked away from it and recovered in a years time. I am worried though that other actresses working with the same man did not,” the singer explains. Ultimately, Björk says she saw positive results from standing up to her harasser. “In my opinion he had a more fair and meaningful relationship with his actresses after my confrontation so there is hope,” she concludes. “Let’s stop this. There is a wave of change in the world.”

Update, October 16: Though Björk never identified Lars Von Trier as the Danish director she accused of sexually harassing her, he has given a statement through his business partner Peter Aalbaek Jensen to clear his name. Von Trier tells Danish paper Jylannds Posten that while he and Björk had conflicts during the filming of Dancer in the Dark — which were widely reported at the time he did not act inappropriately. “As far as I remember, we were victims,” Jensen said. “That woman was stronger than both Lars von Trier and me and our company together.” Von Trier also confirmed his denial to The Hollywood Reporter. He added that Björk’s work was “one of the greatest performances in my movies.”

Lars Von Trier Denies Sexually Harassing Björk