Empire star Kaitlin Doubleday has joined the women accusing Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct, revealing he once assaulted her in a hotel room.
The actress, who plays Rhonda Lyon on the hit TV show, tells The Hollywood Reporter her story is similar to the ones told by many other women, who have opened up about sordid encounters with the disgraced movie boss, now facing police investigations in London, New York and Los Angeles.
She has opened up two months after reading the New York Times expose, which detailed Weinstein's bad behavior and led to his downfall - the producer has since been kicked out of several Hollywood guilds and academies, he has lost his board membership at The Weinstein Company, the production company he co-created, and his wife Georgina Chapman has left him.
"When The New York Times published the explosive story about Harvey Weinstein and his sexual-harassment accusers, I got a text from a friend. It read, simply: 'About f**king time'," Kaitlyn tells THR. "I joked that if I had said 'yes' all those years ago when he made advances, I wouldn't be worrying about how to furnish my house on the cheap. Instead, I'd be figuring out how to properly display my Oscars."
But then the actress read the article and felt the pain of the first wave of accusers, including Ashley Judd.
"It was so unreal," she adds. "While I had heard the whispers of his sexual misbehavior, I was shocked by the extent and frequency of it and I had no idea that what had happened to me was exactly what had happened to so many of them.
"My story reads just like Ashley Judd's. A hotel room. Small talk about movies or books. Doing my best to avoid Harvey's advances, from asking me to wait while he showered to giving him a massage. There were more requests, each of them increasingly vulgar."
Doubleday reveals she met Harvey at the Inglourious Basterds premiere in 2009.
"He was charming as he complimented my sister's (Portia Doubleday) work (in the film Youth in Revolt)," she recalls. "He asked if I had seen the film, which I hadn't, so he offered to send over a copy, which I found surprisingly thoughtful. His assistant got my info, and I didn't think much of it until the next day, when Harvey left a voicemail."
She called her manager, convinced her career was about to sky-rocket and was warned about Weinstein's reputation.
"It wasn't long before he wanted to meet up to give me that screener, but he suggested a drink at the Montage Beverly Hills restaurant," Kaitlin explains. "(I said), 'OK, as long as you don't expect me to come up to your room!'. I got to the lobby, and Harvey's assistant guided me to his table. We had a nice conversation... Nothing else happened. We remained in touch and saw each other here and there, like old friends, until another night at a Montage table.
"He asked me to come to his room to watch some footage because he needed help deciding which ending to go with on (movie musical) Nine. 'Will you please just watch a few minutes?' he asked. I didn't want to go. I knew what he was doing. I had prepared myself for this moment, but still, I went."
"Now the world knows what happens when Harvey Weinstein invites you to his hotel room...," she adds. "Women make decisions like the one I did for so many reasons. Women go into the hotel room because so many of the doors they see are closed. It can be tempting to enter the one that remains open.
"I went up to his room because I was desperate and had been, on some level, since I first started acting. I've had struggles with my appearance, self-esteem and self-worth. Harvey made me feel like he saw me for my intelligence and not for my body. That's what breaks my heart about this experience the most. It feels so chilling when you believe you are being seen as an equal that you are putty in the hands of someone like Harvey, who will use those vulnerabilities against you.
"I went up to that hotel room because I've been groomed to by the world, by the industry and by people's expectations that an aspiring young woman can achieve success only with the help of a powerful man."
Weinstein maintains he never sexually assaulted any woman.