Two women who worked with Jerry Lewis on movies in the 1960s have accused the actor of sexual assault. The allegations were detailed in a documentary for Vanity Fair. Karen Sharpe, who was Lewis’ romantic interest in the 1964 film “The Disorderly Orderly,” recalled when the actor allegedly accosted her in a dressing room before filming on the movie began. “He grabbed me. He began to fondle me. He unzipped his pants. Quite frankly, I was dumbstruck,” Sharpe claimed to VF. The Golden Globe winner was able to thwart Lewis’ advancements. “I could see that he was furious. I got the feeling that that never really happened to him,” she recalled. Instead of continuing to work together, Sharpe offered to quit, but Lewis refused because her contract was already signed.
While working on the 1961 film “The Ladies Man,” actor Hope Holiday was invited into Lewis’ dressing room, where he reportedly locked the door. Holiday alleges that Lewis started discussing her physical features in detail and masturbated in front of her. “He starts to talk dirty to me and as he’s talking, the pants open, and the ugly thing came out,” she claimed to Vanity Fair.
Once news of Sharpe and Holiday’s allegations broke, several fans took to social media to express their disgust. “F**k Jerry Lewis. F**k ALL attackers.I hope he’s burning in hell,” one Twitter user wrote. “Jerry Lewis’s annoying ‘Hey Lady!’ catchphrase had much deeper subtext,” another commented. “And Jerry Lewis is one of many who can rot in… the pages of Vanity Fair,” a person wrote on Twitter.
If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN’s National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).