Tessa Thompson clarifies Lena Dunham Time's Up comment
Thor Ragnarok star Tessa Thompson has clarified remarks she made about Lena Dunham’s lack of involvement with forming the Time’s Up movement.
“I sometimes lack finesse in navigating social media. Hard to discuss issues with nuance there. A response I made to comments on an Instagram became fodder for a piece that I believe was designed to create conflict where there isn’t any,” Thompson wrote in a statement posted to Twitter. “It’s perhaps more complex than that. But I, in no way, want to diminish Lena Dunham and her work, her voice, and her importance. We have spoken and she knows my heart. I feel a responsibility to women that have sometimes felt ignored, dismissed, and underrepresented. They are my beacons. I regret that my words were misinterpreted to distract from the most important thing: The Time’s Up campaign is for everyone, in all capacities, contributions big and small. It doesn’t belong to any one. It is for us all. The beauty of this huge collaboration has been a group of countless committed people who have come together for a shared purpose. To create change. And it is such a powerful thing. I stand, humbled, with everyone involved. Linked not ranked.”
On Sunday, Thompson posted a now-deleted photo featuring women such as Michelle Williams, Reese Witherspoon, Rashida Jones, Tracee Ellis Ross, Emma Stone, and Dunham pledging support for Time’s Up. But in the comments, one user called out Dunham’s appearance — citing her statements previously made in support of Murray Miller, a Girls writer who was accused of sexual assault (Miller denied the allegation). In response, Thompson wrote, “Lena was not anywhere present in our group during the countless hours of work for the last two months. We hosted an open house for the actresses for red carpet messaging and Lena presence was a surprise to us all. This is a time of reckoning. And for many, a re-education. So many women also have real work to do. I’m afraid it’s too nuanced a conversation to have on this platform. But I hear you, and know that your thoughts and words are not lost on me. It’s been discussed.”
In a statement to Indiewire, Dunham said she was “honored to be invited to the meeting by a close friend and to observe the work that these amazing women have been doing the past few months. For highly personal reasons, I’ve been unable to join previous efforts but being asked to be a part of this celebratory moment was truly beautiful. I’ve worked with Tessa and respect her artistry and admire her consistent candor.”
To donate to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, which will provide subsidized legal support to women and men in all industries who have experienced sexual harassment, assault, or abuse in the workplace, visit its GoFundMe page. Learn more about Time’s Up, an organization of women in entertainment combating sexual harassment and inequality, on its website.