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Bombshell Documentary: An Open Secret

December 02, 2014

At ChildrenInFilm.com, we feel it’s important to let our members know about the release of the film, An Open Secret. Director Amy Berg, nominated for her Oscar-worthy work as a documentarian for films including West of Memphis, and Deliver Us From Evil, has created a controversial film that is catching the attention of the film industry. The film An Open Secret, debuted at the DOC NYC Festival on November 14th, treating the subject of Hollywood sex abuse of young male actors. The film looks at the lives of children who were exploited and assaulted by some of Hollywood’s most powerful players.

As DOC NYC co-founder Thom Powers stated at the movie's premiere, a wall of silence has been erected around long-circulating molestations charges in Hollywood.  Berg's film acts as a sledgehammer.

The film played to a supportive crowd, including some of the film's subjects.  One audience member called out, “Thank you for telling this story!” just before the screening began. In fact, the director told the audience “Maybe we’ll get distribution. It’s not very likely.” The film faces significant hurdles in securing a release.

An Open Secret focuses on the rise and fall of an early digital network known as Den, alleged to have been the center of a Hollywood sex abuse ring. Michael Eagan, who was featured in headlines for his accusations against Hollywood elites such as Bryan Singer, is the subject of extensive interviews in the movie.

The film also focuses on a founding member of SAG’s Young Performers Committee, Michael Harrah, as well as young performer Evan Henzi’s experiences with child-actor manager Martin Weiss. Todd Bridges, of “Diff’rent Strokes”, who has said he was a victim of sexual abuse as a young actor, is interviewed. Corey Feldman, who has spoken out against sex abuse in the past, appears in footage from prior TV interviews.

A review of the film in Variety states: that “the most shocking aspect of Berg’s documentary is what it presents as the abusers’ utter lack of accountability.”

John Connolly, the journalist who investigated Den as early as 2002 before, as he conveys in the movie, his story got mysteriously spiked by higher-ups, was also in the audience.  “The reason this movie is having trouble getting distribution is because of Hollywood,” he said.