The author and journalist accusing Michael Douglas of sexual harassment is detailing her side of the story for the first time.
Susan Braudy opened up about her alleged experiences with Douglas, now 73, in a detailed written account in The Hollywood Reporter on Thursday. She reportedly provided the outlet with a detailed written account based on notes and files she kept, as well as a timeline of her employment backed up by pay stubs. She also said she had told three friends about the alleged events at the time, including well-known author Michael Wolff, who wrote the controversial book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.
Braudy’s accusations against the actor first came to light when Douglas preemptively denied them in an interview with Deadline. He explained that he was aware that a former employee, whom he did not name, was planning to come forward with damaging accusations against him, and decided to give his account of the events before her story came out in the press. While Douglas admitted he might have used “coarse language with my friends” and that Braudy might have overheard that language, he denied “being a sexual harasser.”
According to her account, Braudy worked for Douglas in the late ’80s, when she was in her 40s. She was hired to run the New York office of Stonebridge Productions, a production company launched by Douglas, who was one of the biggest stars in Hollywood at the time. Her duties were to “read scripts, hire and supervise screenwriters, and perhaps most important, to babysit Michael in his apartment,” she said in her account.
RELATED: Michael Douglas Preemptively Denies Sexual Harassment Allegation Before It Goes Public
Braudy claimed she endured “sexual harassment by Douglas that included near-constant profane and sexually charged dialogue, demeaning comments about her appearance, graphic discussions regarding his mistresses and more.” She also claimed Douglas used a crude word for female genitalia in a one-on-one meeting on her first day.
During a one-on-one script meeting in his apartment, which functioned as his part time office at the time, Braudy claimed Douglas masturbated in front of her. Douglas vehemently denied this accusation in his interview with Deadline.
“Michael unzipped his chinos and I registered something amiss,” she wrote about the alleged 1989 incident. “I peered at him and saw he’d inserted both hands into his unzipped pants. I realized to my horror that he was rubbing his private parts. Within seconds his voice cracked and it appeared to me he’d had an orgasm.”
Braudy said she left the apartment immediately. “I said nothing. I was surprised I wasn’t falling to pieces even though I was humiliated. I realized he thought he could do anything he wanted because he was so much more powerful than I was. Michael ran barefoot after me to the elevator, zipping his fly and buckling his belt. ‘Hey, thank you, you’re good. You helped me, thank you, thank you,’ ” she wrote.
She told three people about the incident: Wolff, former Newsweek journalist Lynn Povich and film editor Joseph Weintraub, who currently lives with Braudy, according to THR.
From that point forward, Braudy said her relationship with the actor deteriorated. She claims the actor asked her to sign a nondisclosure agreement, which she refused to do. Six months later, she said she was fired.
In his preemptive denial to Deadline on Jan. 9, Douglas said, “I’m bewildered why, after 32 years, this is coming out, now.”
He added, “I’m certainly regretful if she was offended by the language in the ’80s,” he said, adding later, “Finally, masturbating in front of her? I don’t know where to begin. This is a complete lie, fabrication, no truth to it whatsoever.”
As for why she would come forward, Douglas offered, “Maybe she is disgruntled her career didn’t go the way she hoped and she is holding this grudge. It has caused tremendous stress to me for something I believe I have nothing to regret or feel responsible for.”
Responding to the actor’s denial, Braudy told THR, “I believe this is part of the problem, as is his pretext of victimization. These are some reasons why so many women don’t come forward with their stories — Lord knows it’s taken 30 years and a movement for me to gather my courage.