Brendan Fraser is speaking out.
During an interview with GQ on Wednesday, June 6, 2018, the Trust star accused the Hollywood Foreign Press Association of denying his earlier claim that he was groped by Philip Berk, former president of the HFPA, in 2003.
After launching an investigation into the allegation, the HFPA reportedly proposed to release the following statement: “Although it was concluded that Mr. Berk inappropriately touched Mr. Fraser, the evidence supports that it was intended to be taken as a joke and not as a sexual advance.”
“All parties consider this matter to be concluded,” the alleged statement continued, adding that the organization looked forward “to continuing to work with Mr. Fraser.”
Fraser later refused to sign off on the statement. “I don’t get the joke,” the 49-year-old actor told GQ. “I’m the only one who would know where I was touched on my body.”
As Nicki Swift previously reported, the Mummy star first opened up about the alleged sexual assault while speaking with GQ in late February 2018. “I felt ill,” Fraser said at the time, claiming that Berk had reached out to shake his hand before he instead grabbed his butt and touched him inappropriately. He went on to say that he became “depressed” and “reclusive” as a result of the incident, adding that his career seemed to stall afterward. “I don’t know if this curried disfavor with the group, with the HFPA,” Fraser continued. “But the silence was deafening.”
Regarding the organization’s recent findings, Fraser told GQ in his latest interview that he’d requested to see the investigator’s report. However, the HFPA apparently declined to provide it. “They’re kind of behaving like wolves in sheep’s clothing about it, saying, ‘Oh, we want him to heal,'” the Bedazzled actor said. “Well, the first step in that direction would be: What am I healing from? Can I please see this report? What is it? They commissioned an investigation. They received their report. And they’re not giving any details about it, and they’re not giving up the report itself.”
For his part, Berk is still a member of the organization. Having previously called Fraser’s claim a “total fabrication,” he told the magazine that he hadn’t faced any disciplinary action.
At the time of this writing, the HFPA has yet to comment the actor’s recent interview.
While Fraser believes “it’s not too late” for the HFPA to “do the right thing,” he’s now looking past this incident and toward the future. “I want to find some way to make medicine out of this poison, which is not specific just to this enterprise,” he said. “There’s a system in place that’s unwritten. If you abide by it, you will be rewarded. If you don’t, you won’t be. But outside of that, I want to end this episode, this chapter, in my own life and career and move on, just as I’m hopeful that others will be able to in years to come.”