In an interview with Glamour magazine, Jane the Virgin star Justin Baldoni alleges that when he was 21 a man claiming to be a well-connected Hollywood producer tried to coerce him into sex while implying he’d offer career help in exchange. The incident occurred at a spa, where Baldoni was approached by the man while they were in a hot tub together:
“He said, ‘Oh what do you do?’ And I said, ‘Oh I’m an actor,’ and he said, ‘Oh I’m a producer,’ and he started talking about all of the movies he’s done and all the people he knows. He’s friends with Clooney, Cheadle, and this person and this person, and he slowly started to try to get me to take off my pants because I had my bathing suit on and he was naked.”
Baldoni continued, saying, “I remember the way he did it, using his power and what he does and who he knows as a way to make me feel less than, like I wasn’t going to be as successful as the other guys who’d been in the same hot tub with him, naked.” The actor says he momentarily contemplated the offer, but then left.
He added that, “I could imagine how hard and painful that must be for a woman. I mean I was stronger and bigger than the guy, and [then there’s] the fact that no one is going to believe you if you’re a woman because your voice is already not heard.”
The interview occurred at the TEDWomen Conference in New Orleans, where the actor did a talk on toxic masculinity and ending sexual harassment called “Why I’m Done Being ‘Man Enough’.”
Baldoni also said that this incident wasn’t the only time he’d been harassed during his time in Hollywood: “I’ve also experienced [harassment] as a man from women of power … I’ve had my ass grabbed multiple times by powerful women.”