In an interview with BBC radio host Adrian Chiles, Alex Winter, the actor/director best known for his role Bill S. Preston in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, revealed that he was sexually abused as a child actor “in the 1970s.”
Per The Hollywood Reporter, Winter said the abuse had a “hellish” impact on his life, and that he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result. “I began to do work on it. But it really took time,” he said. “And it really wasn’t in my case, I would say, ‘til well into my 30s, that I was really able to do heavy lifting on this stuff.”
Winter went on to say that he didn’t feel that he had the “resources” or “safety” to tell anyone about the abuse, calling out the power dynamic which keeps so many victims silent. Fortunately, he adds, filming the first two Bill & Ted movies (alongside friend Keanu Reeves) was “therapeutic” for him, as that particular cinematic universe is “a very sweet and fun place to run around in.” (A third installment is finally on its way.)
As for what he expects from this post-Weinstein world, Winter said:
The problems aren’t going to get sorted out overnight, because frankly, these issues are part of the fabric of human nature, and they’ve existed since there have been human beings walking around on the planet. So it’s going to take time, it’s going to take mental health work, it’s going to take the capacity of society to listen to some very unpleasant truths about itself. And there’s no doubt that that’s going to take time.