Now powerful figures such as Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein have come to light and demystified the industry. If you ever wanted to be a superstar and become famous, then you might want to reconsider your plans once you learn what it’s really like to live in the spotlight.
Hollywood is more than money, fame, red carpet appearances and millions of adoring fans. There is also shocking shallowness, abuse, heartbreak and more crime. Here’s a dark secret and scary story that demystifies the entertainment industry.
Long before the Harvey Weinstein scandal emerged, there were rumors about the casting couch—a term used to describe stars who are given roles in exchange for sexual favors. Megan Fox gave an interview to GQ and put the rumors to rest by laying out the cold, hard facts.
The actress said “Hollywood legends” would invite her to meet, and she would be so excited for the opportunity. Then, when she would show up, she would realize that the meeting was just a ploy. She said many of the men were able to get away with sleeping with a lot of girls in the industry, but she wasn’t one of them. She would shut them down immediately.
The history of the casting couch is lengthy, with many guilty of its use. An early “practitioner” was Louis B. Mayer, who co-founded Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios in 1924. Mayer, the ground zero of this kind of abuse, had means, motive, opportunity, and that critical piece of the puzzle: the whip. If women didn’t comply, he’d threaten to ruin their careers or those of their loved ones. Sound familiar? “The perils for women in Hollywood are embedded, like land mines, from an actress’s debut to her swan song,” says film critic and historian Carrie Rickey, “where moguls like Harry Cohn reputedly wouldn’t cast starlets like Marilyn Monroe and Kim Novak unless they auditioned in bed.”