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Naomie Harris says a “huge star” groped her during an audition

"Of course no one said anything because he was - he is - such a huge star"

By Patrick Clarke

Naomie Harris on the red carpet
Naomie Harris (Photo: REUTERS/Henry Nicholls/Alamy)

Actress Naomie Harris has said that she was groped during an audition by a “huge, huge star”.

Harris, best known for her role as Eve Moneypenney in the last three ‘James Bond‘ films, and for her Oscar- and BAFTA-nominated performance in ‘Moonlight’, described her experience in an interview with You magazine.

Discussing the #MeToo movement, Harris said that the star put his hand up her skirt during an audition.

“What was so shocking about it was the casting director was there and the director, and of course no one said anything because he was – he is – such a huge star. That was my only #MeToo incident, so I felt very lucky given how rife that behaviour was,” Harris said.

“Now things have definitely changed: I was on a project where there was a #MeToo incident and there was no hesitation… (the perpetrator) was immediately removed.” Harris did not identify either the actor who groped her, or the person who was removed from a subsequent project.

Harris also discussed her support of Black Lives Matter, and the movement’s impact on the film industry. “I’d hope there’s greater awareness [of race issues] now, but obviously injustices still happen every day,” she said.

She added that she was thrilled that she and fellow Black actor Mahershala Ali were cast as leads in forthcoming film ‘Swan Song’, despite the roles not being written specifically for actors of any race. ‘That’s a prime example of the changes happening,” she said.

Mahershala Ali and Naomie Harris in 'Swan Song'
Mahershala Ali and Naomie Harris in ‘Swan Song’ (Photo: Apple TV)

Elsewhere in the interview, Harris discussed the recent fatal shooting on the set of ‘Rust’, and how it has affected her relationship to guns on set. Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed after a prop gun allegedly being handled by Alec Baldwin “discharged” during filming in October.

“After that I was on the set of The Man Who Fell To Earth handling guns and it was terrifying,” Harris said, discussing her forthcoming TV series.

“I hate guns, but a lot of my roles require me to handle one. Even before this, I refused to do a stunt that involved firing a blank because even blanks can kill. I wouldn’t fire it near anybody.”