Eliza Dushku authored a lengthy Wednesday column in The Boston Globe to break her silence on the New York Times‘ report of her $9.5 million settlement that she received over sexual harassment claims against her former Bull co-star, Michael Weatherly. In doing so, Dushku explained that she wasn’t interviewed for the NY Times story so that she could stay compliant with the settlement’s terms. Yet she now feels compelled to address what she calls “revisionist” attempts by CBS and Weatherly in addressing the matter. Dushku then accuses Bull showrunner Glenn Gordon Caron and Weatherly of retaliating against her after she expressed discomfort. “I took a job,” she writes. “[A]nd, because I did not want to be harassed, I was fired.”
For the Globe, Dushku details much of the harassing behavior that was already described by the NY Times. She writes that Weatherly was caught on tape making threesome remarks to her while “mimick[ing] penis jousting with a male costar,” as well as saying that he’d take her to his “rape van.” She discusses how he made several other crude remarks and wouldn’t stop calling her a “ravishing” beauty. Dushku says that she decided to directly speak with Weatherly about how his remarks caused her discomfort, and his alleged response sounds like gaslighting. Dushku then writes that he complained to CBS about her “humor deficit” and set balls in motion for her dismissal:
“After weeks of enduring Weatherly’s harassment, I resolved to deal with it directly. I aimed to be my diplomatic best. This was not easy for me, since there were plenty of other things I would like to have said to him. Framing my request as a plea for ‘help’ in setting a different tone on the set, I asked him to ‘be my ally’ and to ‘help ease the sexualized set comments.’ Weatherly responded with, ‘Eliza, no one respects women more than I do,’ citing his many sisters and his professed history of being ‘too respectful of women.’
“After I left his trailer, I went straight back to my own trailer and wrote down everything I could remember about the conversation in a text to my manager, adding, ‘I hope he actually received it well & doesn’t run back to the studio telling them to fire me lol.’ Then, as I came to learn months later in the settlement process, Weatherly texted CBS Television President David Stapf about 40 minutes after our conversation and asked for what amounted to my being written off the show. Specifically, Weatherly complained that I had a ‘humor deficit.'”
Duskhu’s entire column is worth reading. She describes further passive-aggressive treatment from Weatherly (who denied to the NY Times that he requested her dismissal), who allegedly directed the cast and crew not to compliment her beauty. He then reportedly humiliated her during a speech (in which he did comment upon her beauty), and then she was fired while on set. Dushku states that CBS executives appeared to be shocked at how Caron fired her without their knowledge, but she believes that CBS helped propagate a narrative against her after her firing. She’s also aghast at how Canon took Weatherly’s side while waving away his remarks as “frat” behavior and remarking, “What does [Eliza] expect, she was in Maxim?”
In other CBS-centered sexual misconduct news, the network recently disclosed that former CEO Les Moonves would not receive his $120 exit payout following numerous sexual harassment allegations against him. You can read the rest of Dushku’s piece here.