Steven Seagal is denying another sexual assault accusation, this time made by actress Rachel Grant, who says Seagal attacked her during an audition for Out For A Kill.
"Our client denies having such contact with Ms Grant and further vehemently denies any alleged assault at all," reads Seagal's lawyers' statement, "in particular, the alleged assault occurring in Sofia, Bulgaria, in 2002."
Grant told her story in an interview with the BBC. She said that she flew to Sofia in September of 2002 to audition for Seagal's new film. She got the chance after appearing as Peaceful in the James Bond movie Die Another Day. She was 26 at the time, and said that she was "excited" to meet Seagal, who was a childhood hero to the aspiring actress.
Grant says that she was sent rehearsal lines ahead of time to prepare for the audition. She met with Seagal and the film's director in a hotel suite, but was soon left alone with the action hero, who was then 52 years old.
According to Grant, Seagal almost immediately began asking her to take her top off — though the film called for no nudity whatsoever. She says that she denied him several times, but he kept asking her again and again.
"I stood up to try to distract him," she recalled, "but he was able to tug down my top, which was strapless. My breasts were completely exposed and I was forced to cover myself," she said.
"He pushed me onto the bed with force. Then he said, 'I suppose you want to see my private parts' - though he used a different word. I was looking up and he started to pull down his zip," said Grant. At that point, she says that she "burst into tears," prompting Seagal to stop and apologize at last.
Seagal then allegedly told Grant that he liked to date actresses he worked with to improve the "on-screen chemistry."
Grant ultimately wasn't cast in Out For A Kill.
"It was horrible," Grant said. "I was upset, embarrassed and hurt. What actress should be brought to someone's bedroom on the first meeting and then be told to take their top off?"