Not the best look for James Cameron here.
The famed director has officially spoken out about allegations that surfaced yesterday from Eliza Dushku against stunt coordinator Joel Kramer, wherein Eliza contends she was molested by Kramer as a 12-year-old working actor on Cameron’s 1994 film True Lies.
Eliza gave a very, very detailed account — and Kramer quickly denied, well, pretty much everything — but Cameron came out later on Saturday evening at a Television Critics Association event and just plain old side-stepped the full issue.
Speaking out about it after hearing the news, the Titanic director said (below):
“Directors are historically pretty oblivious to the inter-personal things that are happening on the set, because they’re focused on what they’re doing creatively, but had I known about there would have been no mercy. I have daughters. There really would be no mercy now.”
He later added (below):
“Eliza is very brave for speaking up. It’s just heartbreaking that it happened to her.”
That part is true!!!
As for the first part… being focused on what you’re doing creatively is great — and Cameron is one of the best there — but you can’t take a little time to figure out the inter-personal workings of a group of people on a set that you may be involved with for weeks and months at a time?
Really?? Come on, man!!!
NO ONE is saying Cameron had the power to stop anything here, of course. If you didn’t know, you didn’t know — but just say that, and that you feel bad about it, and that you’ll be more aware of your surrounding next time.
Don’t say that you didn’t know because “directors are historically pretty oblivious.”
That’s a shitty excuse that completely side-steps your authority as leader of a film set.
The bad guy in this equation is obviously Kramer, if allegations bear out to be true. But for Cameron to use the “aw, gee, I’m just way too creative and artistic to notice human beings that are around me for 12 and 16 hours at a time for days on end” excuse is… pretty fucking shitty.
Especially if these allegations turn out to be true and, as Dushku has suspected, Kramer turns out to be a serial predator in some way that legitimately grooms his victims over a period of time as he apparently did Eliza.
People talk, and it’s on people in power (like Cameron) to listen, at some point, no matter how fuckin’ “creative” they may be.
Learn the lesson from this one, James.
[Image via Drew Altizer/Alberto Reyes/WENN.]