One of the stars of “Gossip Girl” says he suffered sexual assault at the hands of over-zealous “Gossip Girl” fans.
Penn Badgley, who played Dan Humphrey on the teen-oriented CW drama series, recounted his experiences in an interview with The Daily Beast.
“As the star of a mammoth teen drama, Badgley was watched on and off screen,” the piece reports. “Actual New York City high schoolers stalked the ‘Gossip Girl’ set in the hopes of seeing their favorite cast members. Many ‘Gossip Girl’ actors, including Badgley, were romantically linked in real life, further blurring the lines between television and reality. So Badgley understands how it feels to have a stranger think that they “know” you, when what they really know is a character, or a product of their own imagination.”
Badgley is quoted saying: “I think as an actor you can become an object of desire, which is something women are already accustomed to more or less around the world — I’ve definitely been, I mean I don’t want to sound sensationalist, but I’ve literally been molested — just in the literal sense of the word — by many people in the moment. Because that’s what they do.”
The Daily Beast adds: “Badgley was thoughtful and cautious when discussing this; he doesn’t want it to be taken the wrong way, and is quick to acknowledge the privilege that being a man, not to mention a white man, affords him. But recent events have caused him to revisit these experiences and reconsider them — Badgley cited Terry Crews as one catalyst, saying, ‘These things very much happen, you know.’”
Badgley also says in the interview: “And it’s interesting to even hear you have that reaction, like ‘I’m sorry,’ because I didn’t even think of it that way then.” You’re led as a man, particularly, that when it happens you should feel great about it. Particularly when it comes from someone who’s feasibly an object of your desire as well.”