Carroll Baker defends Bill Cosby, blames his accusers
Screen legend Carroll Baker didn’t mince words while offering up her thoughts on the #MeToo movement and “wonderful” Bill Cosby.
Baker, one of Hollywood’s last living stars from cinema’s Golden Age and an Oscar nominee for the 1956 film Baby Doll, put the blame on Cosby’s accusers and questioned why women would choose to be alone with the “very sexy” comedian. The 90-year-old actress made the unfiltered claims on The Hollywood Reporter’s Awards Chatter podcast, just one day before Cosby was released from prison.
“My heart is broken for Bill Cosby,” the Baby Doll star declared. “Bill Cosby did not deserve, at his age and in the condition he’s in. … He’s a wonderful human being, absolutely wonderful, and I can’t bear the fact that he’s in prison. I don’t think it was his fault.”
Cosby, 83, had his conviction overturned last week. In 2018, he was sentenced to prison for three to 10 years for assaulting Andrea Constand. Sixty women have accused the disgraced Cosby Show star of sexual assault, typically after they were drugged. (Cosby admitted to giving women drugs, but maintained sex acts that followed were consensual.) Baker put the onus back on the women.
“Why would you go into a secluded place with a man? To play pinochle?” she exclaimed. “I’m sure they were all entranced with him. I have a feeling that that drink was just an aphrodisiac and he did not force them to take it, he just offered it to them. And I think it’s a sin he’s in jail.”
As for convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein, Baker called the Oscar-winning producer “a maniac” and said he deserves to be behind bars. However, she takes issue with women coming forward about sexual misconduct claims years later.
“But also these days, I hate the fact that these women do this,” she continued. “That they come back from years before and they ruin a man’s career.”
As for whether Baker witnessed problematic behavior in the industry, the Giant actress could only think of one incident.
“I was only asked once to lie down on the casting couch, and I just walked out the door,” she shared.
When asked if she thought there were “nonconsensual” acts going on she wasn’t privy to, Baker replied, “No, I don’t think so.”
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