Bella Thorne calls out ‘f**ked up’ casting director who said she flirted with him aged 10

A photo of American actor Bella Thorne wearing a black top as she has her photo taken at a red carpet event. (Getty)

Former Disney Channel star Bella Thorne has opened up about her experience of being sexualised by a casting director when she was only 10 years old.

The actor sat down on model Emily Ratajkowski’s podcast, High Low with Em Rata, to discuss her life and career when she recounted being turned down by an adult who accused her of flirting with him.

“I had a director give me feedback once and I was 10.” She said. “The casting director calls my agent and the agent calls my mom. And they’re like, ‘So she’s not moving forward because the director felt like she was flirting with him and it made him really uncomfortable.’

“What the f**k are you talking about, man?! I don’t give a f**k what I said! I don’t care if I said, ‘Eat my p****y right now!’ [I was] 10 years old. Why, why, would you ever think that?”

Bella Thorne explained that during those types of casting sessions, “you can’t really say or do much. You do the scene, you say ‘hello,’ you walk out”.

She added: “There’s no time to like, ‘Let me go sit on your lap or make you feel uncomfortable.’ What the f**k are you talking about, man?”

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Victim of abuse: Bella Thorne. (WireImage/Phillip Faraone)

Since the incident happened 15 years ago, Thorne is still grappling with the guilt and confusion around it.

“I’m trying to find almost fault in myself,” she continued, “like, ‘what did you do, Bella? What did you do that made him feel like this?’ And every time I’m like, ‘Bella, stop it.’

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“Even that thought right there is becoming part of the problem … it drives me crazy.”

Ratajowski agreed, adding: “If you need a more f**ked up story about Hollywood and paedophilia and the sexualisation of children, I don’t know that there is one.”

Thorne has previously opened up about her experiences with sexual abuse in her childhood, both in her 2019 book, The Life of a Wannabe Mogul: Mental Disarray, and on social media.

In 2018, Bella Thorne spoke out during the Time’s Up campaign which aimed to shed light on sexual assault on women.

“I was sexually abused and physically growing up from the day I can remember till I was 14,” she wrote at the time.

“When I finally had the courage to lock my door at night and sit by it. All damn night,” she added. “Over and over I waited for it to stop and finally it did.”

The abuse continued into her time on the Disney Channel show Shake It Up where she starred opposite Zendaya.

Readers who are affected by the issues raised in this story are encouraged to contact the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 (www.nspcc.org.uk). Readers in the US are encouraged to contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline on (1-800-422-4453) or the American SPCC (www.americanspcc.org).

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Rape Crisis England and Wales works towards the elimination of sexual violence. If you’ve been affected by the issues raised in this story, you can access more information on their website or by calling the National Rape Crisis Helpline on 0808 802 9999. Rape Crisis Scotland’s helpline number is 08088 01 03 02.

Readers in the US are encouraged to contact RAINN, or the National Sexual Assault Hotline on 800-656-4673.

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