Actress Patricia Arquette has thanked The Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik for making a public apology after she was criticised for her article about the allegations of sexual assault against movie producer Harvey Weinstein.
She said that Bialik’s statement, posted on Twitter, had started an “important conversation” surrounding the subject that has dominated headlines for days.
Bialik’s article for the New York Times shared her experiences of life in the Hollywood industry as a “prominent-nosed, awkward, geeky, Jewish 11-year-old” and told how she feels she was not propositioned by high-profile bosses because of her appearance.
Critics have hit out at the writer for her opinion piece, claiming that it suggests women can be responsible for inviting abuse.
The article read: “As a proud feminist with little desire to diet, get plastic surgery or hire a personal trainer, I have almost no personal experience with men asking me to meetings in their hotel rooms.
“Those of us in Hollywood who don’t represent an impossible standard of beauty have the ‘luxury’ of being overlooked and, in many cases, ignored by men in power unless we can make them money.
“In a perfect world, women should be free to act however they want. Nothing – absolutely nothing – excuses men for assaulting or abusing women. But we can’t be naive about the culture we live in.”
In a wordy and apologetic statement, the 41-year-old wrote: “Let me say clearly and explicitly that I am very sorry.
“What you wear and how you behave does not provide any protection from assault, nor does the way you dress or act in any way make you responsible for being assaulted; you are never responsible for being assaulted.”
CSI star Arquette responded: “Thank you for saying that. I think it started an important conversation that needed to be had.”
She said that, despite Bialik’s article, she found the Amy Farrah Fowler actress “pretty”, but added: “Not that pretty matters…and what is pretty? Who decides?”
Other followers also thanked Bialik for her follow-up statement, while some said she had no reason to apologise and that critics had misinterpreted her article.
One responded: “Much respect to you for acknowledging a mistake and apologising. None of us will get it right all the time.”
Weinstein has been accused of abuse by dozens of stars, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Cara Delevingne, Eva Green, Lea Seydoux and Rose McGowan.
He stepped down from the board of The Weinstein Company on Tuesday after the studio he co-founded more than a decade ago sacked him from his role as a chairman.