Hollywood’s Dark Secret: Pedophilia, Child Actors and Those Who Escaped

The dark underbelly of Hollywood has recently come to light as former child actors expose the "open secret."

Actor Elijah Wood attends The Samsung Studio at SXSW 2016 on March 13, 2016 in Austin, Texas.

By Nancy Flory Published on May 31, 2016

Child abuse runs rampant in Hollywood, according to former child actor Elijah Wood, star of The Lord of the Rings, in a recent interview in The Sunday Times. Wood said there’s a dark underbelly of Hollywood, filled with “vipers” who only have their own interests in mind: “If you can imagine it, it’s probably happened.” He compared the situation to BBC’s DJ Jimmy Savile, who is believed to have sexually abused at least 500 women, girls and boys over four decades.

Wood said that his mother protected him from abuse when he moved to Hollywood, by keeping him away from the parties where a lot of the abuse occurred. Others weren’t so lucky.

Wood’s claim is substantiated by another former child actor, Corey Feldman, best known for his roles in ’80s classics like Stand by Me and The Lost Boys. Feldman told a British paper that he was “surrounded” by abusers at a young age and that older men were “like vultures” preying on the young actors. He later suffered from alcohol and drug abuse as well as mental health problems, reports The Telegraph.

Getting Worse, Not Better

In an ABC News interview, Feldman says the problem of sexual predators in Hollywood isn’t going away. “I can tell you that the number one problem in Hollywood was and is and always will be pedophilia,” said Feldman.

The “vultures” he described were “Hollywood moguls” who sexually abused him and his friend, child actor Corey Haim, among others. Feldman believes the abuse contributed to Haim’s death in 2010, as Haim’s drug addiction was a method of coping with the sexual abuse that occurred.

“There are people in this industry who have gotten away with it for so long that they feel they’re above the law,” Feldman said. “That’s gotta change. That’s gotta stop.”

“They reach out to little kids on Twitter, they reach out to little kids on Facebook, and they say, ‘I’m a big producer and I can help you.’ With social media, we have more access than ever to everybody,” said Feldman. “It’s a growing problem, not a shrinking problem.”

Feldman said that at least one of his molesters still works in Hollywood — in a prominent position — although he won’t say who. “I would love to name names,” he said. “I’d love to be the first to do it. But unfortunately, in California, conveniently enough, there is a statute of limitations that prevents that from happening. Because if I were to go and mention anybody’s name, I would be the one that would be in legal problems, and I’m the one that would be sued.” Feldman added that all of the men who passed the two Coreys back and forth were friends, and used intimidation and threats to keep the boys silent about the abuse.

Anne Henry, one of the founders of BizParentz Foundation, a group that supports child actors and their families, said that all child actors have come into contact with a child molester at one point in their career. “I do not think it is an exaggeration to say that every child actor would have brushed shoulders with a pedophile,” she told Fox News. “For us, the pedophilia issue is not new at all and, sadly, is something we have had to educate ourselves about since no one in the entertainment industry was recognizing it.”

Bryan Singer and the Open Secret

The parties Wood referred to are well-known around Hollywood, parties that allow “the young and impressionable to rub up against Hollywood elite — including prominent writers, directors and actors…” but which left damaged children in their wake. These parties were apparently used by the “Hollywood elite” to hand-pick young boys to abuse for their own sexual perversion.

Bryan Singer, X-Men director and one of the most powerful gay men in Hollywood, is now involved in litigation for alleged sex crimes against young men who attended his parties. According to Gawker, Singer’s “henchmen” would scope out young boys at the parties and bring them to Singer for sex. The young men, who desired to break into the acting scene, believed that this was their way to the top.

One young man who attended Singer’s parties recalled how he asked another boy whether he was trying to sleep with someone at the party. The young man responded, “Well, I’m trying to be an actor and this is how it is.” When asked why he didn’t just go to an audition, the boy replied, “Well there are 1,000 people who go to an audition, but I can just get a director or a producer’s phone number.”

Singer wasn’t alone in his alleged predatory acts. An Open Secret, a documentary about “the alleged pedophilic ring of convicted and accused molesters linked to lavish, drug-fueled parties,” outs several Hollywood names, such as Singer’s associates Marc Collins-Rector, Chad Shackman, former child actor Brock Pierce (The Mighty Ducks), and Brian Peck. Peck is an actor, dialogue coach and convicted sex offender who had a cameo in Singer’s X-Men, reports The Daily Mail. Though he’s barred from working directly with children, he is not prohibited from working on shows featuring children.

Polanski: Convicted Pedophile, Hollywood Hero

Director Roman Polanski’s well-publicized sex abuse case highlights the problem with pedophilia in Hollywood and the difficulty law enforcement has in prosecuting the cases — particularly when the offender is not an American citizen. In 1977, Polanski raped a 13-year-old girl he had plied with champagne and drugs. Although he pled guilty and served 42 days in a California jail, he fled to France before his final sentencing. Far from being an outcast, Hollywood has embraced Polanski, ignoring the attempts to press charges.

Since the sexual abuse of a minor occurred in 1977, Polanski has made numerous movies and won an Academy Award for the 2003 film, The Pianist. Directors Martin Scorsese, David Lynch, Woody Allen and many others signed a petition in 2009 calling for his release from a Swiss jail on the statutory rape case, while film producer Harvey Weinstein described the original charge a “miscarriage of justice,” adding, “Whatever you think about the so-called crime, Polanski has served his time.” In reality, it appears that Polanski has only actually been incarcerated for 42 days.

In a new development this week, Poland’s justice minister has revived an effort to have Polanski extradited to the United States, asking Poland’s Supreme Court to annul a ruling blocking Polanski’s extradition. 

The Importance of Parental Protection

Michael Harrah, a children’s talent manager in Hollywood, confessed in his An Open Secret interview to sexually abusing at least one child actor. What Harrah said on camera spoke volumes about the importance of parental control and protection, as well as the expectation that to get ahead the child actors had to allow themselves to be abused: “Many of the kids that I worked with couldn’t have even been able to take advantage of being in the industry had they had their families move here with them.”

Mara Wilson, who played little Natalie Hilliard in Mrs. Doubtfire, said in her article “7 Reasons Child Stars Go Crazy (An Insider’s Perspective)” that “sexual exploitation is just part of the package,” for child actors. Although she didn’t experience sexual abuse personally (she describes her Jewish parents as supportive and responsible), she was the subject of a porn website when she was 12 years old.

“Discipline your children, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to their death.” Prov. 19:18 (NIV)

Wilson survived her stint as a child actor without abuse because her parents “were always very protective of me,” she said. Wood said he was spared, in part, because he said his mother was “far more concerned with raising me to be a good human than facilitating my career.”

While these actors may have not appreciated it at the time, their parents’ protectiveness appears to have saved their innocence — and may have saved their lives.

Pray for the protection of those who enter the field of entertainment, particularly those who are most vulnerable.

Print Friendly
Comments ()
The Stream encourages comments, whether in agreement with the article or not. However, comments that violate our commenting rules or terms of use will be removed. Any commenter who repeatedly violates these rules and terms of use will be blocked from commenting. Comments on The Stream are hosted by Disqus, with logins available through Disqus, Facebook, Twitter or G+ accounts. You must log in to comment. Please flag any comments you see breaking the rules. More detail is available here.
  • John

    People have to start praying to Christ against this evil. Matthew 18:6

    • nitestar95

      Oh sure. I prayed and prayed because my family life was a nightmare; parents and older sibling beating me on a regular basis. So christ sent me a pedophile! Christians tell me it was ‘to test me’. Test a six year old? WTF??? Thanks, Christ. Thanks for nothing. Go F**k yourself with your christ. All that baloney about god watching over his children, protecting the weak and innocent. It’s all bulls**t.

      • John

        Alright, nice reply there guy. If what you state is true they were no children of God to begin with.

  • 6thinclass

    All 50 States should pass laws of no time limitations for reporting (and follow-up action) sexual abuse on children! Doesn’t it take adulthood for them to realize the abuser no longer has control over them?

    • nitestar95

      Makes you wonder about those who passed that statute of limitations, doesn’t it?

      • faithntrust

        yes & no. It is difficult to comprehend the power the abuser has over the victim. How many people would think that it would take so many years to overcome such influence & for a person to come into their own individuality to realize how terribly they were taken advantage of – especially those that there were threats made against their family. Bill Cosby, the University Coach, & those in the Priesthood are examples where their positions, influence, & ‘good reputations’ protected them for years.

  • Gal 5:22-23

    Obviously people who are gung-ho for normalizing homosexuality are not going to condemn any other form of sexual perversion.

    • nitestar95

      Not true at all. You’re only seeing the stereotype.

  • Marianne Gervais

    I almost walked out of American Beauty when it was released. I couldn’t believe that it won Best Picture! Last night I watched The Nice Guys, and was shocked at the party scenes in which the young actress was present. That can’t have been good for her. Probably wasn’t good for me, but at least I am an adult!

  • Lorr

    Big Money=Big Perverts..The BBC tried to cover some of its pedos,, and got caught.. now its wide open and people are still trying to cover it up..The Wonderland Club is the biggest in the world… see a documentary on you tube while its still up.
    Big judges and law makers and doctors..you name it..Hollywood is small potatoes. Getting us used to seeing homos on TV is the first step to letting them get off with it.They are brain washing us..like big religion! Big religion is all pedophiles. Control over women and kids. ( FIRST CLUE)

    • nitestar95

      Pedophilia isn’t about being gay. It’s about having sex with prepubescent children. They usually don’t care if it’s a boy or a girl. However, for the males, boys are more available to them, because those men aren’t suspect when they act sort of like an uncle or big brother to the boys (that’s what happened to me). Church choirs, boy scouts, kids athletic teams, teachers, older boys in the neighborhood, neighbors, it could be anyone, any one older or more powerful (bullies) than the victim him or her self.

  • Airborne

    I totally agree to WATCH OVER THEM (parents’ protectiveness). Too many children are being exposed to pedophiles. You need both discipline and a protectiveness to help children grow strong.

  • nitestar95

    It’s not just Hollywood. Child sexual abuse is all over the place. So watch the children. If something looks fishy, check it out, or tell someone in authority to check it out. You could be saving that child’s life.

  • Naticzka Henry

    What is painful is the hypocrisy in Hollywood& in the world in general. Nate Parker was destroyed, yet Polanski, Allen – they still darlings, coz of their achievements in the art/cinema world. Trump is hated, we all remember horrible tape etc, Meryl Streep& others spoke against him, yet wheres actors rage abt Allen or Polanski, did Meryl speak one thing abt this? Nope – silence.Where are the all- mighty daily tweets abt ”morality” and ”fight for justice” when it comes to these two big names? I understand Allen&Polanski are great directors&artists, but any artistic achievement cannot be a barrier protection against punishment for a crime! Unfortunately being a great artist does not equal a great man. Picasso was genius painter, but a-hole as a man. Many greats are messy&problematic, but when they are also criminals – its time to treat them like any other criminal, justice must be a priority.

  • destiny

    They are everywhere, just like Sodom and Gomorrah, California is burning. Righteous people need to leave California, an evil place. It will soon wash away into the ocean. Nevada will be oceanfront. Then it will wash away as well.

God Transforms You to Participate in the Work of His Kingdom
Paul David Tripp
More from The Stream
Connect with Us