In a lengthy Facebook post on Friday night, actress Eliza Dushku accused stunt coordinator Joel Kramer of sexually molesting her on the set of True Lies when she was 12 years old, and he was 36. “I have struggled with how and when to disclose this, if ever,” she wrote. “At the time, I shared what happened to me with my parents, two adult friends and one of my older brothers. No one seemed ready to confront this taboo subject then, nor was I.”
The Buffy and Dollhouse star said Kramer, had gained her and her family’s trust over the course of the shoot, and alleged that he used it to lure her into a hotel room alone with him.
I remember, so clearly 25 years later, how Joel Kramer made me feel special, how he methodically built my and my parents’ trust, for months grooming me; exactly how he lured me to his Miami hotel room with a promise to my parent that he would take me for a swim at the stunt crew’s hotel pool and for my first sushi meal thereafter. I remember vividly how he methodically drew the shades and turned down the lights; how he cranked up the air-conditioning to what felt like freezing levels, where exactly he placed me on one of the two hotel room beds, what movie he put on the television (Coneheads); how he disappeared in the bathroom and emerged, naked, bearing nothing but a small hand towel held flimsy at his mid-section. I remember what I was wearing (my favorite white denim shorts, thankfully, secured enough for me to keep on). I remember how he laid me down on the bed, wrapped me with his gigantic writhing body, and rubbed all over me. He spoke these words: “You’re not going to sleep on me now sweetie, stop pretending you’re sleeping,” as he rubbed harder and faster against my catatonic body. When he was ‘finished’, he suggested, “I think we should be careful…,” [about telling anyone] he meant. I was 12, he was 36.
According to Dushku’s post, she said that Kramer had nicknamed her “Jailbait” on set and even jokingly used the nickname in the presence of other crew members. She also alleged that she had been injured on set after one of the adults she had told about the incident visited the production. “To be clear, over the course of those months rehearsing and filming True Lies, it was Joel Kramer who was responsible for my safety on a film that at the time broke new ground for action films,” she wrote. “Whereas he was supposed to be my protector, he was my abuser.” Dushku also wrote that she’d heard years ago that he’d been “found out” and had left the industry, learning only recently that he was still working. This year he did stunt coordination work for Blade Runner 2049 and an episode of CBS’s Star Trek: Discovery, according to IMDB.
Reached by phone Saturday, Kramer called Dushku’s allegations of sexual misconduct “atrocious lies.” Kramer told Vanity Fair that he and some of the True Lies crew had taken Dushku swimming and for a sushi dinner. He denied luring Dushku to his room, molesting her, or calling her “Jailbait.” He also said he did not recall Dushku having been injured on set, but said she could have bruised herself. “I would not want anyone to get hurt on my set, especially a minor,” he said.
“All I can say is nothing sexually. . .nothing inappropriate ever happened," he said.
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