2019.05.06 16:40

New initiative to address sexual harassment in Lithuanian film industry

Jūratė Skėrytė, BNS 2019.05.06 16:40

The Lithuanian Film Center (LKC) is launching a project targeting sexual harassment in the film industry.

“During the 2017 #metoo movement, certain cases in the Lithuanian film industry and responses to them demonstrated the necessity to take specific measures to evaluate the extent of sexual harassment in the film industry, to increase its recognition, to take effective preventive measures and to make agreements that would secure the principles for a safe creative and working environment,” LKC said in a statement.

The project will include an anonymous survey to measure the prevalence of the problem in Lithuania's film industry, followed by a training programme for directors and producers about how to recognise and create an environment of no tolerance for sexual harassment.

In 2017, two Lithuanian women, an actress and an artist, accused the internationally-acclaimed film director Šarūnas Bartas of sexual harassment. One of the women recounted a sexual assault experience in a studio after a casting session and the other claimed that she had been sexually harassed by Bartas in his country home. The director has rejected the accusations.

Sexual harassment and misconduct accusations were later publicly made against painter Jonas Gasiūnas, photographer Gintautas Trimakas, Arvydas Liepuonius, an associate professor at Vilnius Academy of Art, and theater director Jonas Vaitkus.