Jamie Lee Curtis suggested recently that her mother, the late “Psycho” star Janet Leigh, would have stayed silent amid the Me Too movement that has exposed sexual predators in show business and elsewhere.
In an Interview magazine piece published Friday, Curtis and fellow actor Melanie Griffith, daughter of “The Birds” and “Marnie” star Tippi Hedren, discussed how director Alfred Hitchcock treated their famous mothers during the making of those 1960s films.
“I don’t know how he was with your mom, but he apparently was not very good with my mom,” Griffith said.
“I don’t think Janet would have ever acknowledged if there was any bad behavior,” Curtis replied. “She was, it’s a bad term, but kind of Pollyannaish about the industry. I think the #MeToo movement would have really upset her. It’s not fair to unpack that, because she’s dead and I’m going to put words in her mouth, but knowing her, I think she would not say that he misbehaved in any way.”
Curtis, who wrote in a 2017 HuffPost essay that she had “been subjected to my own private, personal versions of sexual harassment on the job,” elaborated on how her mother might have reacted had she been mistreated.
“I don’t think Janet would ever have acknowledged anything, because from her standpoint, she was just grateful,” she told Griffith. “That was very much her take. I think she would have looked at it as, ’That was just the way it was.’”
Leigh died in 2004 at the age of 77.
Hedren, who is now 91, alleged in 2016 that Hitchcock sexually assaulted her in the 1960s.
“You know, she was of the #MeToo movement, and it was not accepted at that time,” Griffith said of her own mother. “She was shunned and he made sure that she was shunned.”
Last week, at the premiere of Curtis’ latest fright fest “Halloween Kills,” the “True Lies” actor wore a wig in the hairstyle of her mother in “Psycho.” She also carried a bloody shower curtain. Leigh became part of Hollywood lore for her primal scream before her character was slashed to death in the shower.