Fatty Arbuckle and the Start of the Me Too Movement
By | June 30, 2018
Long before Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby started groping young Hollywood starlets, there was Fatty Arbuckle. In the early 1920s, Arbuckle was a big star…literally and figuratively. He topped the scales at more than 260 pounds and embraces the stage name “Fatty” as a replacement for his given name, Roscoe. And, he was Hollywood’s first actor to earn more than one million dollars. Like Weinstein and Cosby after him, Arbuckle’s fall from grace was the result of inappropriate sexual relations with an up-and-coming Hollywood actress. Or was it? Was Arbuckle simply an innocent man who was in the wrong place at the wrong time?
Bootlegged Booze and Beautiful Babes
Fatty Arbuckle liked his alcohol, even during Prohibition. The silent film star was a frequent guest at Hollywood parties where bootlegs liquor flowed freely. On Labor Day weekend in 1921, Arbuckle, enjoying a break from filming, was living large at the swanky St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco. Also in attendance was a 30-year old beauty named Virginia Rappe, an aspiring actress. As the evening went by, Arbuckle and Rappe went alone to one of the hotel’s rooms, Room 1219. Moments later, Rappe screamed.