“That moment that I thought was fine which absolutely wasn’t fine; that moment where I thought, ‘Oh this is generational and that’s how people talk,’ or ‘I guess that’s how men should treat me,'” Dern said. “I just replayed my whole childhood — because I started acting at 11 — back to myself, and it was shocking.”
Bassett remembered experiencing some discomforting childhood incidents as well, which she recalls through different eyes now, as a mother.
“I remember years later I tried to bring it up to my mother, and she was like, ‘I don’t want to talk about that,'” Bassett said. “As a grown woman, I thought she was strong in that moment because she took a stand for me and made sure it never happened again. But I think as a mother, now that I put myself in her shoes, it would have been such a moment of personal shame.”
The pair discussed Me Too issues in relation to Dern’s new HBO film, “The Tale,” in which Dern’s character must reckon with her previously-suppressed memories of childhood sexual assault. Dern explained her relationship with the character, as well as Jennifer Fox’s directorial vision. The movie is based on Fox’s real-life experiences.
“As much as I felt isolated from the trauma that she walked through, I realized that the story she wanted to tell about memory is something we all relate to because we’ve all retold a story to ourselves in order to survive a story of heartbreak, of family divorce, of loss,” Dern said. “I started reading it and realizing how much I had made up to survive something.”
Watch the full interview: