Amber Tamblyn Speaks Out in New Op-Ed After James Woods Called Her Accusations a Lie: 'Women Don't Get to Have a Side
In the wake of her experience with James Woods, Amber Tamblyn wrote a New York Times op-ed for women whose accounts of harassment, abuse and sexual assault aren't believed
Amber Tamblyn is done not being believed.
In a passionate New York Times op-ed published online Saturday, the 34-year-old actress fired back a those who question women’s accounts of harassment, abuse and sexual assault at the hands of men — while also detailing an “unsafe” experience she had with a male crew-member on the set of what appears to be CBS’ Joan of Arcadia.
Woods denied Tamblyn’s allegations, calling it “a lie” and forcing Tamblyn to post a text message from her friend recalling the story as proof.
But while Tamblyn felt the need to defend herself, she said the incident really sparked up a memory she had when she was 21 while starring a “very successful and beloved” TV show.
According to the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants alum, a male crew member had been making her feel “unsafe” at the time — “showing up to [her] apartment after work unannounced, going into [her] trailer while [she] wasn’t in it, and staring daggers at [her] from across the set.”
Though the two had flirted a bit when first meeting, Tamblyn was in a relationship and wasn’t interested. So disturbed by the behavior, she went to meet with a producer to report the crew member.
After hearing her account, the producer allegedly told Tamblyn, “Well, there are two sides to every story.”
That’s where Tamblyn draws the line now.
“For women in America who come forward with stories of harassment, abuse and sexual assault, there are not two sides to every story, however noble that principle might seem,” she wrote. “Women do not get to have a side. They get to have an interrogation. Too often, they are questioned mercilessly about whether their side is legitimate. Especially if that side happens to accuse a man of stature, then that woman has to consider the scrutiny and repercussions she’ll be subjected to by sharing her side.”
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Tamblyn first shared her story of Woods after he criticized the upcoming film Call Me By Your Name for featuring a 24-year-old grad student falling in love with his professor’s 17-year-old son. In response, Armie Hammer, who plays the older man in the film, called Woods out for dating a 19-year-old when Woods was 60. Tamblyn then responded to Hammer’s tweet and added her story.
Reflecting back on her alleged incident with him, Tamblyn explained in her Times op-ed that his accusation that she was lying sent her back “to all the days [she’s] spent in the offices of men; of feeling unsure, uneasy, questioned and disbelieved, no matter the conversation.”
Still, Tamblyn is proud of herself for speaking out against Woods — and urged woman around the world to not just stop listening to men who disbelieve them, but to also stop listening to their own disbeliefs about themselves.
“I have been afraid of speaking out or asking things of men in positions of power for years,” she said. “What I have experienced as an actress working in a business whose business is to objectify women is frightening. It is the deep end of a pool where I cannot swim. It is a famous man telling you that you are a liar for what you have remembered. For what you must have misremembered, unless you have proof.”