Upon her death, Carrie Fisher was revered for her strength, wit and her unwavering refusal to adhere to Hollywood’s playbook.
In 2000, a friend of Carrie’s, a writer named Heather Robinson, was sexually assaulted by an unidentified Oscar-winning producer and – in her own unique and special way – Carrie stood up to him… by sending him a cow’s tongue.
Ross told Arizona’s 94.9 Mix FM a story about a business meeting with an ‘Oscar-winning producer’, recalling being picked up in his car and feeling frightened when he later pulled over.
He climbed on top of her and groped her. When Ross told Fisher about the incident, she says Fisher was worried about her but she sent this message a few weeks later.
Carrie reportedly told Heather:
I just saw [blank] at Sony studios. I knew he would probably be there, so I went to his office and personally delivered a Tiffany’s box wrapped with the white bow.
It was a cow tongue from Jerry’s Famous Deli with a note that said, ‘If you ever touch my darling Heather or any other woman again, the next delivery will be something of yours in a much smaller box.’
— Heather Robinson (@ErrorOfMyWeighs) October 14, 2017
Carrie was always known as being spirited and principled among Hollywood’s elite, refusing to conform to the damning culture of silence which has been brought into public attention in recent weeks.
You can get to know her a little better in the HBO documentary, released posthumously:
[ooyala code=”o4NjkyZDE6WEa2YIsVosWWSgyarBvvyq” player_id=”5df2ff5a35d24237905833bd032cd5d8″ auto=”true” autoplay=”true” pcode=”twa2oyOnjiGwU8-cvdRQbrVTiR2l”]
Heather’s revelations have resurfaced in the aftermath of the fall from grace of Harvey Weinstein, an Oscar-winning producer who was revered in Hollywood award mechanisms but feared by women industry-wide.
Many women’s accounts of sexual abuse, rape, belittling, harassment and bullying at the hands of Weinstein have been published in the New Yorker and The New York Times.
The bravery of these women who came forward – some anonymously, for fear of losing their job, reputation and livelihood – has caused a global knock-on effect, with men and women everywhere sharing their stories of sexual abuse.
It’s become plain to see Weinstein’s case cannot simply be chalked up to one man’s monstrous behaviour, but is rather illustrative of a systematic and endemic culture of sexual abuse by those in powerful positions, whether in the world of work or behind closed doors.
Brave women like Carrie Fisher have been fighting this and sticking up for their friends and colleagues, for a long time.
While no survivor of sexual abuse owes anyone their story, I’m sure Carrie would be proud of those who’ve come forward to show other victims they’re not alone.
Let’s all be a little more like Carrie Fisher and refuse to let power and authority overshadow what we know to be right and wrong.