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VILNIUS – 53 year old Lithuanian film director Šarūnas Bartas on Tuesday said he disagreed with the sexual misconduct accusations leveled against him by two female artists, adding he would move out of the premises leased by the Vilnius municipality for his Kinema studio on preferential terms.
Bartas told Baltic News Service:
“Answering publicly to the accusations made about me on Facebook, i would like to say that i do not agree with the accusations made against me”.
The film director also said that since he respects his own and other people’s privacy, he is not planning on defending or explaining himself on social media or in the press.
Last Friday, 25 year old Lithuanian actress Julija Steponaitytė, star of the movie The Summer of Sangailė, accused Šarūnas Bartas of sexual abuse.
Steponaitytė posted the following comments on her Facebook page:
“I was sexually assaulted by film director Sharunas Bartas five years ago. Five years have passed but it is still present for me this evening, when I write this post. I was keeping it in secret because I thought it wont exist if no one will find out. But its not true. It’s time for us to break the silence and stop pretending that it doesnt exist. Please, lets not let it happen again. #metoo Sarunas Bartas”
Over the weekend, scenographer/artist Paulė Bocullaitė also accused Bartas of sexually abusing her the same year he allegedly assaulted Steponaitytė
On Monday during a press conference, Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius announced that the city was cutting ties with Bartas’ film studio Kinema, which rents its space from the city.
Lithuanian actress Julija Steponaitytė – Photo by: Greta Skaraitienė/Žmonės.lt
Lithuanian scenographer/artist Paulė Bocullaitė
By: Linas Johansonas / LTnews