Pamela Anderson says that the theft of her sex tape recalled the powerlessness and trauma she experienced after being raped aged 12 – and attacks the high-profile drama series, Pam & Tommy, for ‘retraumatising’ her.
She said of the Emmy and Golden Globe nominated show: ‘It gives me nightmares. I didn’t sleep last night.’
And the model and actress, 55, added: ‘I have no desire to watch it. Never gonna watch it. I never watched the tape, not gonna watch this. Who knows how they’re gonna portray it. Nobody really knows what we were going through at that time. They should have had to have my permission.
Pamela Anderson says the theft of her sex tape triggered memories of feeling powerless after being raped aged 12 – and attacks the drama series, Pam & Tommy, for ‘retraumatising’ her
‘I texted Tommy the other day and said: ‘How do you feel about everything?’ and he goes: ‘Pamela, just don’t let it hurt you as much as it did the first time.’
She went on: ‘I blocked that out of my life in order to survive, it was a survival mechanism really, and now that it’s all coming up again I feel sick from my whole stomach. My stomach right now feels like it has been punched.
‘This feels like when the tape was stolen. Basically you are just a thing owned by the world.’
While on honeymoon in Mexico, the couple shot a 54-minute home video on a Hi8 videotape, mostly just ‘goofing about’. It included about eight minutes of sex.
Pamela and Tommy became the centre of the first celebrity sex tape scandal in the 1990s
According to a police report filed by the couple in 1995, the tape was in a safe in their home alongside guns – an AK-47, FNC assault rifle, .45-70 caliber rifle and Mossberg stainless steel shotgun plus a Rolex, a gold-and-diamond Cartier watch and the white bikini that Anderson wore to their wedding.
The entire safe was stolen in October 1995 by electrician Rand Gauthier, who had been sacked by the couple and believed that they owed him money. He was played by comedian Seth Rogen in the film.
Gauthier says he wheeled their 6ft x 3ft x 4ft safe out of their garage strapped to a trolley in the dead of night after bypassing their security system.
He had no idea of its contents until he opened it up, and later recalled thinking: ‘We put it in (the video machine) and see what it is, and of course, cha-ching! The dollar signs fly before our eyes. But we’re going, this is the kind of thing people will get killed over.’
Anderson said of the Emmy and Golden Globe nominated show: ‘It gives me nightmares. I didn’t sleep last night.’ Pictured: Lily James and Sebastian Stan in Pam & Tommy
In March 1996, aware that copies of the VHS were circulating, the couple filed a $10 million civil lawsuit against everyone they thought might have a copy, including Penthouse magazine. Meanwhile the tape was being sold on websites and also broadcast online by internet wunderkind Seth Warshavsky.
In November 1997, the couple signed the copyright over to him, after which point Warshavsky’s Club Love sold access to the tape. Club Love then struck a deal to make VHS copies of it.
Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee filed a $10million lawsuit against everyone they thought might have a copy of the sex tape
Anderson tells the Netflix documentary Pamela, A Love Story, which is out on January 31st, that she remains haunted by it.
She said: ‘It was such a really happy time in my life but I didn’t realise that everything was about to change. We didn’t have any idea that anything in there as something that would hurt us.’
The first inkling was when they were sent a copy of the VHS tape through the mail. Tommy Lee watched it. Anderson said: ‘He says: ‘This is going to be disturbing. This is a VHS tape of us having sex. Oh my god. We realised that they have our home videos that’s the ‘Oh s***!’ moment.
‘We were newly married we were naked all the time and just filmed each other on vacations and stuff. This was just us being goofballs. They found all the nudity they could from different Hi 8 tapes and they spliced it together.’
They were at a loss about how to get the tape back and started legal actions. Anderson was pregnant with their second son, Dylan.
She said: ‘I didn’t know that I was going to be completely humiliated I remember walking into the courtroom and all the lawyers had these naked pictures of me. They said: ‘You were in Playboy, you’ve got no right to privacy’.
The 55-year-old model said she felt ‘completely humiliated’ following the leak
‘How am I getting questioned about my sexual preferences and my body parts and where I would like to make love when its stolen property? It made me feel like I’m such a horrible woman, that I’m just a piece of meat that this should mean nothing to me because I’m such a whore basically.’
She adds that it brought back feelings of shame and powerlessness which she had experienced when she was raped.
She tells the documentary that when she was 12 she went to a condo owned by a guy who her friend had a crush on. The friend went upstairs with the owner and she was left downstairs with his friend, who was 25. They played Backgammon, and then he told her that she looked as if she needed a massage, and raped her. She told nobody.
She tells the documentary: ‘I had so much shame about what happened. I felt like it was my fault. My mom was always crying about my dad, and I couldn’t bear to hurt her more. I didn’t tell her or anyone.’
Of the court case she says: ‘I don’t know how many days I was deposed but they wanted me to come back and come back. I just said to Tommy: ‘I can’t take it any more.’
She said: ‘It was such a really happy time in my life but I didn’t realise that everything was about to change’
‘I know some people would have fought to the death for it but I am pregnant and I don’t want this to affect the baby. Tommy and I had a miscarriage first, and we were scared that it would happen again. We were not going to put Dylans life at risk. It absolutely devastated me but I just closed my eyes and signed the papers.’
They didn’t make ‘a dime’ off the tape. She adds: ‘You can’t put a monetary number on the amount of pain and suffering it caused.’ Her name became the punchline of a thousand jokes.
She reflects: ‘It was different for me than it was for him. Tommy is a rock star – it adds to the image of the craziness and everything for him. But I knew at that point my career was over.’
Pamela, A Love Story, is on Netflix from January 31st.