[imagesource: Mireya Acierto/FilmMagic]
The #MeToo movement set the stage for women from all sectors of society to speak out about sexual assault, starting with the entertainment industry.
A number of documentaries have been released giving voice to the victims of some of these men, that latest of which, On The Record, deals with accusations levelled against music mogul Russell Simmons.
Rolling Stone with Drew Dixon’s story:
Dixon especially loved hip-hop, which is why, when she managed to secure an A&R job at Def Jam Records [Simmons’ Company] in the early Nineties, she felt like she’d won the lottery. Her instincts for spotting new artists were peerless; she was one of the first to single out the Notorious B.I.G. as a major talent.
Dixon admired Simmons, who had earned the title “the godfather of rap”, even though he made advances on her from time to time.
She rebuffed his advances, figured out ways to stave off possible situations in which he might try to get her alone or get aggressive with her, and figured her successes at the label made her too valuable to alienate.
Hey, it’s just the price of being an attractive woman in the music industry, right?
Then after a business dinner one night, Simmons offered to call Dixon a car so she could get home. His apartment was right there. I’ll wait downstairs, she told him. But I have a demo to play you, he’s said to have replied, come up and hear it. So she went with him. And that, Dixon alleges, was when Simmons violently sexually assaulted her.
Since then, numerous accusations against Simmons have surfaced. As the documentary goes on, it paints a broader picture of the hip hop industry in general as unsafe for women.
Check out the trailer:
The documentary is two hours long, and according to Rolling Stone, it’s a harrowing ride, so prepare yourself.
It aired yesterday on HBO Max in the US, but no word on whether it will air in South Africa yet.
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