When she was a teenager, Thandie Newton was sexually abused by an unnamed casting director during an audition. She has since been very vocal about the exploitative nature of Hollywood for women, an advocacy of which left her feeling upset and surprised when she was shut out from participating in the #TimesUp movement when it launched. “I wasn’t hot enough,” she explained to News Corp, saying her relative level of fame was the likely factor for being eschewed. “I wasn’t mainstream enough and I wasn’t going to be at the Oscars this year, even though I am having a renaissance in my career.”
Newton describes not being asked as “very painful,” especially since she was briefly “ostracized” from Hollywood when she first spoke out with her claims against the casting director — which was worth it to her in the long run. “I felt if there was one girl whose family was thinking about putting their child into show business, that would help them decide,” she continued. “That was all I cared about.” Since launching in January, #TimesUp has raised more than $20 million and helped thousands of victims of workplace misconduct with its legal defense fund. Numerous prominent women in Hollywood — such as Reese Witherspoon, Natalie Portman, and Shonda Rhimes — have been working closely with the initiative in the following months.