Bella Thorne is speaking out against a director who once accused her of “flirting with him” when she was just 10 years old.
In a conversation during Tuesday’s episode of actor and model Emily Ratajkowski’s podcast “High Low with EmRata,” the “Midnight Sun” actor recalled the shocking moment she thinks back on “every day” that drives her “crazy.”
While discussing how young girls are all-too-often sexualized early in their Hollywood careers, the Disney “Shake It Up” alum shared it was “fucking stressful” being a child actor in the public eye.
Detailing a particularly inappropriate audition she had with an unnamed male director, the 25-year-old star said he claimed she was flirting with him and making him “uncomfortable” during a casting session when she was a child.
“I had a director give me feedback once, and I was 10. The casting director calls my agent and the agent calls my mom, and they’re like, ‘So, she’s not moving forward because the director felt like she was flirting with him, and it made him really uncomfortable,’” Thorne recalled.
Thorne said the incident made her “almost [find] fault in myself.” Though she reminded herself that she was “not the problem” at age 10, she added the moment left her spiraling in a sea of frantic thoughts.
“‘What did you do, Bella? What did you do? You made him feel like this,’” she recalled thinking at the time.
Stunned by the accusations of inappropriate flirting at such a young age, Thorne added, “I don’t give a fuck what the fuck I said. I don’t care if I said, ’Eat my pussy right now. [I was] 10 years old. Why would you ever think that [I was flirting]?”
Thorne continued, “Also, you’re in a director session; you can’t really say or do anything. You do the scene; you say hello, and you walk out. There is no time to go sit on your lap or make you uncomfortable. What the fuck are you talking about?”
Elsewhere in the interview, Thorne — who also shared she was once nearly cut from Disney after wearing a bikini and body chain to a beach — got candid about the struggles of discovering her sexuality with “not only the whole world watching you but specifically men.”
Speaking on how society pressures young celebrities into a “box,” Thorne shared, “I feel like I’ve rocked the word ‘sex’ for a long time and I’ll always keep rocking this word because it’s what’s been put on me since I was so little, and yet it’s still something that I’ve taken so much of my own power back by owning that word.”
Telling Thorne to “forgive” herself because she was a “fucking kid,” Ratajkowski, who starred in 2014’s “Gone Girl,” went on to open up about her own story of an inappropriate interaction with her agent at 16 years old.
“They pointed to my picture, and I was with my friend who was also modeling at the time with the same agency, and they were like, ‘This face. This is how we know this girl gets fucked. You’ve got to give a lesson, Emily, on this,’” the star recalled.
“I remember being like flattered and also obviously so embarrassed and horrified, and now, of course, looking back, that is so fucked up that they said that,” she added.
In January 2018, Thorne opened up on social media about suffering from sexual abuse at a young age.
“I was sexually abused and physically growing up from the day I can remember till I was 14. when I finally had the courage to lock my door at night and sit by it. All damn night. Waiting for someone to take advantage of my life again. Over and over I waited for it to stop and finally it did. But some of us aren’t as lucky to get out alive. Please today stand up for every soul Mistreated. #timesup,” she wrote on Instagram at the time.
Need help? Visit RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Online Hotline or the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s website.