Actor Matthew Lawrence, best known for his role in Disney’s Brotherly Love and as Robin Williams’ on-screen son Chris in Mrs. Doubtfire, recently claimed that he was let go from his agency after refusing to take his clothes off for an unnamed Marvel director.
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During a recent episode of the Brotherly Love Podcast, co-hosted by Matthew himself and his brothers Joey and Andrew, the Mrs. Doubtfire star revealed that his agency fired him for refusing to have his pictures taken by an “Oscar Award-winning director” who promised him a role in a Marvel movie.
Lawrence talked about the #MeToo movement and how men aren’t as vocal about their experiences with Hollywood executives asking them to do questionable things in order to get big roles in movies or television.
“MeToo movement in regards to the entertainment industry and what’s happened,” the actor prefaced. “Actually, anybody in power that uses their power to influence somebody else for anything really. [The #MeToo movement] was a very good thing.”
He went on, “It was very prevalent in our industry. I know I’ve been on movie sets where I’ve heard male producers talk about these girls they’ve given jobs because of either the way they look, or that they went out to drinks with them. I’ve been privy to all those conversations, so I know how important actually [the #MeToo movement] was.”
“Because it is a real thing. The casting couch. We all know it’s existed. We’ve all been somewhat complacent, in a way, towards it. And I know I have a responsibility for that, and you guys do as well.” Lawrence admitted.
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“But the one thing that doesn’t get talked about enough in the #MeToo movement is how this is a two-way street. In fact, it’s a three, maybe even four-way street,” he went on, recalling fellow actor Terry Crews’ experience, who in 2017 claimed to have been groped by a “high-level Hollywood executive.”
“Terry Crews feels like he was groped and used as a piece of meat by somebody in power above him within the industry. Not a lot of guys, in my opinion, have come out and talked about this in the industry,” the actor noted.
Lawrence would then open up about his own experience with an unnamed director who the actor claims asked him to strip off his clothes for a photo shoot that, were he to comply, would eventually land him a role in a Marvel movie.
“There’s been many times in my life where I’ve been propositioned to get a huge role,” Lawrence declared. “I’ve lost my agency because I went to the hotel room — which I can’t believe they would send me to — of a very prominent Oscar Award-winning director who showed up in his robe, asked me to take my clothes off, and said he needed to take Polaroids of me and that — if I did X,Y, and Z — I would be the next Marvel character.”
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Lawrence further recalled, “I didn’t do that that and my agency fired me because I left this director’s room. And a lot of these stories, a lot of my other male friends have gone through with both men and women in this industry.”
“But there’s a double standard, and this is where I bring Terry Crews,” he continued. “Terry Crews comes out and says it [and] people are laughing at him. People don’t support him. They kick him out. Why? Because he’s a man that represents masculinity. And I think our society is less ready to hear that situation going on with men then they are with women.”
Like Lawrence mentioned, Terry Crews spoke out at the very beginning of the #MeToo movement — as more women came forward to denounce and condemn disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein — taking to social media to recall his experience with an anonymous executive.
“This whole thing with Harvey Weinstein is giving me PTSD. Why? Because this kind of thing happened to ME,” wrote the actor in 2017.
In a follow-up tweet, the White Chicks actor declared, “My wife n I were at a Hollywood function last year n a high level Hollywood executive came over 2 me and groped my privates.”
“Jumping back I said What are you doing?! My wife saw everything n we looked at him like he was crazy. He just grinned like a jerk,” Crews claimed.
Crews would then go on to list some of the reasons he, and presumably others who have also gone through a similar experience, prefer to remain silent, saying, “Who’s going 2 believe you? ( few) What r the repercussions?(many) Do u want 2 work again? (Yes) R you prepared 2b ostracized?(No).”
“I understand and empathize with those who have remained silent. But Harvey Weinstein is not the only perpetrator,” he declared.
“Hopefully, me coming forward with my story will deter a predator and encourage someone who feels hopeless,” the Brooklyn Nine-Nine star encouraged.
Unfortunately, neither Lawrence nor Crews have given a name to their respective alleged harassers. Publicly denouncing the purported sexual abuse, however, is a step in the right direction — baby step, yes, but a step nonetheless.
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