Los Angeles: The sexual misconduct allegations that veteran director Michael Douglas tried to pre-empt have finally surfaced.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the 73-year-old actor has been accused of sexual misconduct by journalist Susan Braudy, who claimed that the star unzipped his pants and m*********d in front of her.
Braudy has spoken publicly for the first time about an incident she claims occurred in the 1980s when she was working in the New York offices of Stonebridge Productions, the company launched by Douglas.
She wrote, “Michael was usually barefoot, his blue oxford shirt unbuttoned to his navel. I sat across the room on the yellow silk couch taking notes”.
However, during a meeting in 1989, when they were brainstorming an idea about creating an ET-like character, Braudy said her employer slid down the back of his chair and ended up on the floor.
“Michael unzipped his chinos and I registered something amiss. 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 o****m”, noted Douglas.
Braudy said she left the apartment immediately and said nothing, adding, “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, saying ‘Hey, thank you, you’re good. You helped me, thank you, thank you’.”
But Braudy said that her relationship with the actor collapsed in the months thereafter, and she was ultimately let go in late 1989.
She explained, “When he sweetly asked me to sign a confidentiality agreement, I knew Michael was preparing to fire me. Don’t sign. my lawyer Leon Friedman said. ‘Keep saying your lawyer is out of town.’ So Michael waited six months for my lawyer ‘to return’.”
Douglas has already denied the allegations, issuing a preemptive statement in which he described the story as “an unfortunate and complete fabrication”.
He added, “I’m certainly regretful if she was offended by the language in the ’80s,” he said, adding later, “Finally, m**********g in front of her? I don’t know where to begin. This is a complete lie, fabrication, no truth to it whatsoever”. (ANI)