Mira Sorvino has responded to the allegations that Asia Argento sexually assaulted a young male actor and subsequently paid him off. The actress issued a statement on Twitter, noting that she is “reeling from the recent news” but still “hoping against hope” that the accusations are not true.
“I have been heartsick over the recent allegations against Asia Argento,” Sorvino wrote. “Time will clarify things and perhaps she will be exonerated, but if true, there is no lens that makes it better. Child sexual assault is a heinous crime and is against all that I and the #MeToo movement stands for. I remain dedicated in the fight for all victims and change the culture that encourages the abuse of power in sexual relationships.”
According to a New York Times report published Sunday, actor Jimmy Bennett made the accusations against Argento. The Italian actress reportedly paid him $380,000 in November, following an alleged assault that took place in 2013 in a California hotel room when Bennett was 17. Argento has since denied the allegations, but she confirmed earlier this week that Anthony Bourdain, the actress’ late boyfriend, made a payment to Bennett so the actor would stop harassing them.
Argento denied the assault allegations in a statement, saying, “I am deeply shocked and hurt by having read news that is absolutely false. I have never had any sexual relationship with Bennett.” She added that the accusations constitute “longstanding persecution.”
Sorvino and Argento were two of the first women to come public with allegations of sexual misconduct against Harvey Weinstein, with both vocally criticizing the movie mogul on a global platform. Sorvino is also a leader in the #MeToo movement, which has worked to expose issues of sexual harassment and assault around the world over the past year.
Rose McGowan, another Weinstein accuser, spoke out on Monday via Twitter, saying “I got to know Asia Argento ten months ago. Our commonality is the shared pain of being assaulted by Harvey Weinstein. My heart is broken. I will continue my work on behalf of victims everywhere.” She later added, “None of us know the truth of the situation, and I’m sure more will be revealed.”