Legendary and often-controversial actress Jane Fonda said she knew about the allegations against disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein for a year, and now, she wishes she had spoken out sooner.
“I found out about him about a year ago,” Fonda told BBC, “and I wish that I had spoken out.”
When the host pressed the iconic star as to why she didn't say anything when she first heard about his allegedly abusive behavior, including rape, Fonda expressed regret.
“I will admit that I should've been braver,” the 79-year-old celebrity said. “And I think from now on, I will be when I hear such stories. Thank God it's being talked about. This is hardly unique in Hollywood.”
Fonda, who said she didn't meet Weinstein until she “was old,” made the comments to BBC just hours after speaking with CNN's Christiane Amanpour about the matter. While Fonda told Amanpour it's “important” to expose someone's abuse, she said it's “a very, very, very, hard thing to do” because the people victimized don't “get anything out of it.”
Fonda suggested abuse of women has been normalized in much of society because they are “seen for just being sexual objects, there for a man’s desire instead of as whole human beings.”
The star, who is no fan of President Donald Trump, said sexism and sexual abuse “is not unique” and happens “at the most horrendous high levels.” She called Trump's past comments about women — and his own alleged assault — “unacceptable”:
“We have a man who is president who does these things. And what kind of a message does that say? Unfortunately, that counteracts a lot of the good that we’re doing. Because a lot of men see, well, our president does it and he got elected, even after people discovered that he was an abuser so I’m just going to go ahead and do what I want to do.”
Fonda's honest evaluation of her failure to speak out sooner comes one week after the allegations against Weinstein were first revealed by The New York Times. Weinstein has reportedly checked himself into a sex addiction rehabilitation center in Europe, per TMZ.
Watch Fonda's comments to BBC below.