Dustin Hoffman faces second accusation of sexual harassment as producer comes forward
One day after a woman publicly accused Dustin Hoffman of sexually harassing her when she was 17, a second woman has decided to speak up as well.
Producer Wendy Riss Gatsiounis described to Variety the alleged encounter, which she says transpired in 1991. She was developing a screenplay that was seemingly of interest to Hoffman and "Tootsie" screenwriter Murray Schisgal.
The initial meeting went relatively smoothly, she said, although there was an uncomfortable moment with Schisgal asked if she had a boyfriend or husband, leading Hoffman to "playfully" chastise him.
Three weeks later, the trio met again: "And this time, it's, like, Dustin Hoffman's really different," she recalled. "He says, 'Before you start, let me ask you one question, Wendy -- have you ever been intimate with a man over 40?'" Riss Gatsionis was in her 20s, and Hoffman was married and in his 50s.
"I'll never forget — he moves back, he opens his arms, and he says, 'It would be a whole new body to explore,'" Riss Gatsiounis said. "I'm trying to go back to my pitch, and I'm trying to talk about my play. Then Dustin Hoffman gets up and he says he has to do some clothing shopping at a nearby hotel, and did I want to come along? He's like, 'Come on, come to this nearby hotel.'"
Hoffman then allegedly left after Riss Gatsionis made it clear she wouldn't go to the hotel. "And then Murray Schisgal says, 'Look, we're not really interested in your play, because it's too film noir-ish.' And that was it."
According to Riss Gatsiounis, she told agent Mary Meagher about the incident, to which Meagher said she had long heard "rumors" about Hoffman. Meagher died in 2006.
Hoffman has not publicly responded to Riss Gatsiounis' account, but he did respond to the first allegation about the then-teenager, saying, "I have the utmost respect for women and feel terrible that anything I might have done could have put her in an uncomfortable situation. I am sorry. It is not reflective of who I am."
- This article was initially published on AOL.com: Dustin Hoffman faces second accusation of sexual harassment as producer comes forward