Kate Upton is speaking out about her experience working with Guess.
Previously, the supermodel came forward in the #MeToo movement trending on Twitter, where she slammed Guess and singled out the brand’s co-founder Paul Marciano in a social media post.
“It’s disappointing that such an iconic women’s brand @Guess is still empowering Paul Marciano as their creative director #metoo,” the recently married model wrote in January. “He shouldn’t be allowed to use his power in the industry to sexually and emotionally harass women #metoo.”
However, Marciano has denied all sexual harassment claims.
But last week, she detailed the claims in a new interview with TIME, claiming that Marciano assaulted her and began harassing her during her first professional modeling campaign with the jeans brand when she was 18! 😯
In a statement to Time, Marciano has said that Upton’s accusations are “absolutely false” and “preposterous.”
Upton detailed her lengthy story to Time. Photographer Yu Tsai says he witnessed the event and has corroborated it. When asked about what happened with Marciano, Upton told the following story.
“After the first day of shooting the Guess Lingerie campaign [on July 25, 2010], Paul Marciano said he wanted to meet with me. As soon as I walked in with photographer Yu Tsai, Paul came straight up to me, forcibly grabbed my breasts and started feeling them — playing with them actually. After I pushed him away, he said, ‘I’m making sure they’re real,'” Kate alleged in her Time interview. “Despite doing everything I could physically do to avoid his touch throughout the meeting, he continued to touch me in a very dominating and aggressive way, grabbing my thighs, my arms to pull me closer, my shoulders to pull me closer, my neck, my breasts, and smelling me. He then told Yu Tsai to leave us alone.”
One month later, Upton worked on her next Guess shoot. According to the model, Marciano called her asking to see her hotel room. She would decline multiple times.
“The next day, I learned that I had been fired from the shoot. Someone had called my agency to say I had gotten fat and would not be needed on set [that day],” Upton alleged. “I was devastated, especially because at this point no one from Guess had even seen me.”
The model did continue to work with the brand and alleges that she and Tsai worked out a plan for Upton to never be alone with Marciano.
Upton then detailed her final days with the brand.
“I had a final shoot [in May of 2011], and he was outwardly rude and degrading the entire time. He said I was ‘disgusting’ and started telling people how unprofessional I was by spreading rumors that I was drunk on set and partying every night, which of course I wasn’t,” Upton claimed. “I was then told to leave because Paul had said, ‘Get that fat pig off my set.'”
Upton also says she was offered a campaign in 2012 and it was more than the brand had ever paid her, but she walked away from the opportunity about a week before the shoot was scheduled.
She says she came forward because, “Paul used his power to make me feel insecure and powerless, but I’m not going to let him intimidate me anymore. These men think they are untouchable, but times are changing.”
As for Marciano’s reaction, he gave a statement to TIME, denying the claims, “I have never been alone with Kate Upton. I have never touched her inappropriately. Nor would I ever refer to a Guess model in such a derogatory manner.”
He added, “I fully support the #metoo movement. At the same time, I will not allow others to defame me and tarnish my reputation. I have pledged to Guess and its Board of Directors my full support and cooperation with a fair and impartial investigation.”
Who should we believe? Kate Upton or Paul Marciano?