×

Jane Seymour Says She Almost Quit Acting After Being Sexually Harassed by Producer

Jane Seymour revealed on Tuesday that she was sexually harassed early in her career by “the most powerful man in Hollywood at that time.” As a result of the incident, Seymour quit acting for a year — and almost left the industry altogether.

During an interview with the Australian morning show “Sunrise,” the “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” star said an unsettling experience with a power producer left her feeling threatened and unsure of her future in Hollywood before her career even launched. “I’ve often wondered whether I should tell this story, but I do feel it is very important,” Seymour said.

She said she went to Hollywood to screen test for a movie around the beginning of her career. “Then another major producer asked if he could meet me,” she said. “He had another movie that he wanted me to star in. It was very exciting. He asked if I would come to his house to do a screening.” Her agent and the other producer (from the first screen test) were also thrilled about the opportunity.

“I went to the house expecting to see lots of other people there. There was no one there,” Seymour recalled. “He showed me the screen test I’d done, then he sat down next to me and said, ‘I’ve told everyone that you’re perfect for my movie. I can’t wait. You’re just perfect, but I’ve told everyone, and I’ve done my bit. Now it’s your turn to do your bit.’ I looked at him innocently and said, ‘Yes, I’m going to do a great screen test for you in a day and a half.’ And he said, ‘No, no. You know what you have to do.’ And I went, ‘No, I don’t.'”

She continued, “He put his hand on my thigh, way up high. Being very British, I crossed my legs and started scooting down the couch until I ended up with no couch left, and I had no option but to stand up and say, ‘Please help me get home.'”

Seymour said she had gotten to the producer’s house by cab, so she had to call another taxi as she waited in the foyer with “a man who had made it quite clear that he was expecting” sexual favors. The actress claimed that he demanded she not tell anyone about the incident, or that she was even at his house. After telling him that her agent and other people already knew she would be at his home that day, she recalled him insisting that she lie or risk never working again anywhere on the planet. “He had that power,” she said. “The fact that it stopped me from being an actress for a whole year — and I could have quit the profession completely — shows you how devastating it was to me.”

More Film

  • Bohemian Rhapsody

    'Bohemian Rhapsody,' 'Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Among Cinema Audio Society Winners

    Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” won the Cinema Audio Society’s top prize for sound mixing at Saturday night’s 55th annual CAS Awards. The film is Oscar-nominated for sound mixing this year along with “Black Panther,” “First Man,” “Roma” and “A Star Is Born.” In a surprise over heavy-hitters “Incredibles 2” and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” Wes [...]

  • Oscars Placeholder

    Make-Up and Hair Stylist Guild Applauds Academy's Stance on Airing Every Oscar Winner

    Rowdy boos were followed by triumphant cheers at the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild Awards on Saturday in Los Angeles, as the Hollywood union touched on a week of controversy over a reversed decision to hand out four Oscars during the show’s commercial breaks. Hair and makeup was one of the four categories that would [...]

  • Marvelous Mrs Maisel Vice

    'Vice,' 'The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Lead Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Awards Winners

    Adam McKay’s Dick Cheney biopic “Vice,” starring Oscar nominees Christian Bale, Amy Adams and Sam Rockwell, won two awards at the sixth annual Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Awards Saturday night. The film won for best period and/or character makeup as well as special makeup effects. “Mary Queen of Scots” received the prize for period [...]

  • Bette Midler

    Bette Midler to Perform on the Oscars (EXCLUSIVE)

    Bette Midler will perform “The Place Where Lost Things Go” at the Oscar ceremonies on Feb. 24, Variety has learned. Midler, a longtime friend of composer-lyricist Marc Shaiman, will sing the song originally performed by Emily Blunt in “Mary Poppins Returns.” The song, by Shaiman and his lyricist partner Scott Wittman, is one of five [...]

  • Olmo Teodoro Cuaron, Alfonso Cuaron and

    Alfonso Cuarón Tells Why His Scoreless 'Roma' Prompted an 'Inspired' Companion Album

    Back around the ‘90s, “music inspired by the film” albums got a bad name, as buyers tired of collections full of random recordings that clearly were inspired by nothing but the desire to use movie branding to launch a hit song. But Alfonso Cuarón, the director of “Roma,” is determined to find some artistic validity [...]

  • Berlin Film Festival 2019 Award Winners

    Berlin Film Festival 2019: Nadav Lapid's 'Synonyms' Wins Golden Bear

    Israeli director Nadav Lapid’s “Synonyms,” about a young Israeli man in Paris who has turned his back on his native country, won the Golden Bear at this year’s Berlinale on Saturday. The Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize went to François Ozon’s French drama “By the Grace of God,” a fact-based account of the Catholic Church [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content