After spending her life in the spotlight, it’s no surprise that Jane Fonda is, at the age of 79, still a controversial figure. As she engages in interview after interview to promote her latest movie, Our Souls at Night, Fonda has been dropping bombshells and making headlines.
She’s in the news twice today, speaking on two vastly different topics.
The first came with a recently-published article in Town & Country, in which Fonda railed against everything from the Trump administration to ex-husbands and the substance of the movie she’s currently promoting.
Our Souls at Night stars Fonda and Robert Redford (reunited on-screen for the first time in 38 years) as a widow and widower who begin sleeping together (platonically at first) to rekindle a sense of companionship.
“For Fonda, Our Souls at Night Town & Country article is a meaningful movie, but not a milestone,” the reads. “She would have been happier with Our Souls at Night, truth be told, if there had been an actual sex scene instead of just kissing and the implication of more.”
Despite being disappointed that the relationship couldn’t be depicted honestly on-screen, Fonda says she identified with her character, Addie.
“I love her attitude, maybe because I share it myself. And the attitude is this: ‘Look, there’s a lot of time behind me and not much time ahead of me. And whatever time is left, I want to do it differently. I feel scared to be by myself at night. And I’m going to do something about it. I totally relate to all of that,” Fonda says in the interview.
“I’m not afraid of death, but I’m afraid of getting to the end without becoming the best I can be as a person. I think it’s why I never was able to say with a husband. I just always saw that it could get better. That sounds terrible,” she admits. “I wouldn’t want to erase any of them, but they all seem like stepping stones.”
Fonda’s most recent televised interview is also causing a stir, because she’s admitted to knowing about the allegations of sexual assault against Hollywood bigwig Harvey Weinstein, and doing nothing about it.
“I found out about Harvey about a year ago and I’m ashamed that I didn’t say anything right then.”
When interviewer Christiane Amanpour questioned Fonda’s decision to remain silent, Fonda indeed looked abashed.
“I was not that bold because I guess it hadn’t happened to me and so I didn’t feel it was my place.”
Fonda revealed that Rosanna Arquette, who has spoken out about being assaulted by Weinstein, had told her of the incident.
Fonda confirmed she had never personally suffered at the hands of Weinstein, but acknowledged her own history of sexual assault. “It has happened to me,” she says. “It has [but] I only met Harvey when I was old; Harvey goes for young because that’s more vulnerable but it’s very, very common.”
Given that Fonda only acknowledged her own history of sexual abuse earlier this year, it’s not surprising that she didn’t speak out when she was informed about another person’s experience.
“I’ve been raped, I’ve been sexually abused as a child and I’ve been fired because I wouldn’t sleep with my boss and I always thought it was my fault; that I didn’t do or say the right thing,” Fonda admitted in a past interview.
“I’m glad it’s coming out,” she says of the Weinstein scandal. “I’m so proud of those fellow actors that are speaking up and I know that it’s taken a long time, it’s a very, very, very hard thing to do—you don’t get anything out of it as the person who’s been victimised but it’s important that it come out.”