casting couch


Definition of casting couch

: a couch in an entertainment executive's office on which aspiring actresses are reputed to perform sexual acts in exchange for desired roles broadly : the practice of abusing one's power to obtain sexual partners

Examples of casting couch in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Unlike other aspects of Jane’s routine, which includes menial yet haunting tasks like scrubbing stains off her boss’s casting couch, the Froot Loops don’t relay anything about the toxic behavior pervading her workplace. Sonia Rao, Washington Post, "‘The Assistant’ isn’t about Harvey Weinstein. It’s about the culture that enabled him.," 8 Feb. 2020 One of the earliest known instances of casting couch behavior was not in the movies, but on Broadway. Elizabeth A. Harris, New York Times, "How #MeToo Is Smashing the Casting Couch," 30 Jan. 2020 Seven months earlier, Farrow and his producer, Rich McHugh, had begun researching a story about the modern Hollywood casting couch. Anne Diebel, The New York Review of Books, "The Good Guy," 28 Jan. 2020 For recent evidence, look to Nielsen's brilliant and cutting Variety op-ed about Harvey Weinstein, casting couches, and structural inequality against women in Hollywood., "Has Hollywood Changed Since Gladiator? Connie Nielsen Doesn't Think So," 8 June 2018 In 2017, Ben Zimmer analyzed the origins of the phrase casting couch in an article for The Atlantic. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Stormy Daniels's Oh-So-Familiar Story," 26 Mar. 2018 Over three years ago, a woman was on the radio saying that Halle Berry’s manager was her worst casting couch experience ever., "Taraji P. Henson ‘Shocked’ And ‘Disappointed’ After Sexual Harassment Claims Against Manager Surface," 6 Feb. 2018 But, of note in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, Krefft concludes that Fox was never unfaithful to his wife, Eva, while his rival studio lords — Jack Warner and Louis B. Mayer — philandered infamously on their casting couches. Matt Damsker, USA TODAY, "New bio: Remembering William Fox, the flawed genius behind 20th Century Fox," 26 Dec. 2017 On 2016’s Midwest Farmer’s Daughter, country singer Price detailed Nashville casting couch sleaziness. Dan Deluca,, "Best songs of 2017: Lana Del Rey to Lorde to Lil Uzi Vert," 7 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'casting couch.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of casting couch

1931, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of casting couch was in 1931

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Cite this Entry

“Casting couch.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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