"People are afraid of the consequences, such as losing their career,"

Actresses in the Asian film business are less likely to speak up about sexual assault like the Harvey Weinstein scandal.

Variety reports that Asia’s “conservative attitude towards sex” and “fear of consequences” prevent abuse victims in the Asian entertainment business from coming forward.

The publication added that it was “highly unlikely” that Asian actresses “will come forward in the way that their Western counterparts have” like the Harvey Weinstein scandal.

Executive secretary of Hong Kong Performing Artistes’ Guild Candice Yu said her organisation has not received such allegations over the past two years, since she has been working in the position, even though such situations do exist.

“People are much more reserved and conservative here in China or Asia. People are afraid of the consequences, such as losing their career,” Yu said.

“Many of the allegations against Harvey Weinstein referred to events that happened many years ago. But if our members seek help from us, we will definitely support them.”

An anonymous industry insider revealed that men who were masquerading as film or music executives had made sexual advances towards actresses or musicians.

“They pretend to offer these girls a movie or record deal opportunity, if these girls could ‘return favor,’” the producer said. But these girls will not come forward, because they would put themselves in the spotlight, be judged by netizens, and considered as gold-diggers.” 

Sexual assault allegations do exist in Asia but are few and far between. During the Busan Film Festival, an unnamed actress reportedly accused director Kim Ki-duk of physical and verbal abuse. She claimed that the director forced her to participate in an unscripted violent sex scene. The director denies the allegation and the case currently sits with prosecutors.

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