Jessica Teich told Vulture.com the Oscar-winner harassed her over a two- to three-year period in the mid 1980s after she started working as a researcher and writer on an ABC special Dreyfuss conceived. She claims in one incident, Dreyfuss exposed himself.
Dreyfuss and Teich met in 1984. At the time, Teich was in her mid 20s and just out of grad school. Dreyfuss was 12 years older, but was already an Oscar-winner and married with a child. They met at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles, where the actor was appearing in a play.
"He wasn't that much older than I was, but in every possible way his position in life couldn't have been less comparable to mine," Teich told Vulture. "That's how vast the power differential was. He was famous, he was rich, he had an Oscar. He was my boss. There was no question about it."
Dreyfuss asked Teich to work on Funny, You Don't Look 200: A Constitutional Vaudeville, a special about the U.S. Constitution's bicentennial he was producing and hosting for ABC with the support of the Disney Channel. One day in October 1987, he asked her to come to his trailer, where he exposed himself. She claims Dreyfus brought her face close to his penis.
"He was hard. I remember my face being brought close to his penis," she told Vulture. "I can't remember how my face got close to his penis, but I do remember that the idea was that I was going to give him a blow job. I didn't, and I left."
Teich called it an "out-of-body experience" and could not recall exactly how she got out of the situation. She "swiftly" tried to get out of the room and later pretended it didn't happen.
That was just once incident of harassment, Teich said. "He created a very hostile work environment, where I felt sexualized, objectified, and unsafe," she told Vulture.
She claims Dreyfuss would try to kiss her during meetings and slipped her "I love you" notes.
"He has that way of sidling up to you and saying things like, 'I want to f**k you,'" Teich told Vulture. "That was said all the time. He would constantly steer conversations to this yucky, insinuating thing, and I would sort of try to pull us back to a place where we could actually get some work done."
The 70-year-old Dreyfuss sent a statement to Vulture, "emphatically" denying he exposed himself to Teich, now 58. He admitted to flirting with her and trying to kiss her, but was "horrified and bewildered to discover that it wasn't consensual. I didn't get it. It makes me reassess every relationship I have ever thought was playful and mutual."
Teich told Vulture she decided to come forward after Dreyfuss' son Harry said he was groped by Kevin Spacey. Dreyfuss said he was "incredibly proud" of his son for coming forward.
"When I read about his support for his son, which I would never question, I remember thinking, But wait a minute, this guy harassed me for months," Teich told Vulture.
Photo credit: Getty Images / Jason LaVeris