Megan Fox is opening up about her career and why she hasn't been a vocal participant in Hollywood's #MeToo movement. "Even with the #MeToo movement, and everyone coming out with stories—and one could assume that I probably have quite a few stories, and I do—I didn’t speak out for many reasons," Fox told the New York Times in a recent interview.
"I just didn’t think based on how I’d been received by people, and by feminists, that I would be a sympathetic victim. And I thought if ever there were a time where the world would agree that it’s appropriate to victim-shame someone, it would be when I come forward with my story." In the wake of Hollywood's version of Tarana Burke's Me Too campaign, a slew of men have been called out by people in the industry for their inappropriate behavior. Harvey Weinstein is just one of the media giants that felt the impact of accusations made by those he allegedly assaulted and attempted to intimate into sexual acts. But Weinstein's reckoning came years after discussions were had behind closed doors, until a larger contingent of people in Hollywood (i.e. Ashley Judd, Lupita Nyong'o, Rose McGowan) spoke out publicly.
RAINN found that the majority of sexual assault incidents that happen, go unreported for a variety of reasons including feared retaliation, belief that authorities wouldn't do anything, and belief that the incident isn't important enough to report. Also enveloped into why victims don't report incidents is the theory of "perfect victims" who are perceived to be more credible sources of reported assaults.
While Fox has never claimed she was sexually assaulted or abused during the course of her career, her restraint to share her "stories," for whatever her personal reasons are, is not rare.
"I was rejected because of qualities that are now being praised in other women coming forward," Fox says. "And because of my experience, I feel it’s likely that I will always be just out of the collective understanding. I don’t know if there will ever be a time where I’m considered normal or relatable or likable."
An underlying issue remains in the movement. The complex nature of delayed disclosure, intimidation, industry "norms," and consent play a huge part in how #MeToo will play out in Hollywood. Fox's sentiment speaks to a larger discussion on what qualifies as a "sympathetic victim" and who society chooses to believe and support.