The ‘Friends’ actor has produced a series of six short films, aiming to combat sexual harassment, entitled #ThatsHarassment.
The initiative was set up alongside Mazdack Rassi, co-founder and creative director of Milk Studios in New York City, with the shorts directed and adapted from Israeli-American director Sigal Avin’s original films.
Entitled The Actor, The Boss, The Coworker, The Doctor, The Photographer and The Politician, each film portrays a different type of harassment.
Alongside being the executive producer of the campaign, Schwimmer also stars in one of the films. Actresses Cynthia Nixon and Emmy Rossum also feature.
In an interview with Cosmopolitan regarding the films, Schwimmer said that he grew up with sexual harassment stories from his mother.
“Every woman in my family, in my life, has been harassed, except my daughter, thank god, who’s only six.”
On the reasoning behind setting up the project, Schwimmer explained:
“In the course of these stories and this process, I was repeatedly putting myself in the mind-set of what it must be like to be a woman in the world today. When you’ve been objectified your entire life and become accustomed to being a second-class citizen in many, many ways — constantly told that you aren’t worth the same as men, basically, and that your body comes first, or what you look like comes first —
It makes a lot more sense to me that a lot of women don’t even recognise when they’re being harassed. Because you spend your whole life not being treated with the kind of respect that men are automatically given.”
Avin explains the importance of the films in speaking up about sexual harassment:
“I have two daughters. That’s what I would want women to take from these films. To talk. To know what’s happening. Just to be able to really understand what they want and what they don’t want, and to be able to say it with no fear.”