Penn Badgley is participating in Life is “You” screen during the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour at The Beverly Hilton hotel, on Thursday, July 26, 2018, in Beverly Hills, California.
Penn Badgley the feeling that he needed to go deeper in to himself after a comment he made about “molested” during his “Gossip Girl” days of the started getting picked up by multiple news outlets.
“The point of my comment was not to confess, a personal trauma,” he said in a statement to People. “I was speaking about the way in which emotional and physical boundaries are violated for someone in the public eye, which is seen as an object of desire.”
In his interview with the Daily Beast, Badgley — who is currently portraying a dark and deranged stalker on the Life of the “You” — recalled portraying heartthrob Dan Humphrey on “Gossip Girl” and how some of the show’s fans had what he called a “beautiful complete obsession” with him.
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“I think as an actor can be an object of desire, that is something what women are accustomed to in more or less all over the world,” he said. “I’ve definitely been, I mean, I don’t want to sound sensationalist, but I have literally abused — only in the literal sense of the word-by a lot of people in the moment. Because that’s what they do.”
Badgley was careful not to compare his experiences with a number of the women in the #MeToo movement, but said that the story of Terry Crews, who come forward after an alleged attack inspired him.
“You lead like a man, in particular, that if it happens you have a very good feeling about it,” he said of undesirable developments. “Especially if it comes from someone who is problematic is an object of desire.”
The often private actor indicated in the interview that he was happy that “You” is coming out at this crucial moment.
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The cast of “Gossip Girl” with whom Badgley rose to fame.
“I think it’s important that a show like this is now, because if he had come from a different time, we can’t have these needed conversations around it,” he explained. “And perhaps we are all too ready to consume something that I actually think has some very dangerous seeds in.”
Badgley celebrates his return to TV with a healthy sense of caution.
“I certainly took a break. I had absolutely the question of whether I wanted to continue doing what I’ve done,” he said about life after “Gossip Girl.” “But I’m excited — I think.”
When ET spoke with Badgley about the role earlier this month, he was very enthusiastic about portraying a darker character.
“I just had this great time with it in this way that I had not expected,” he said. “So, then I discovered what it really meant to Joe as an actor.”
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