In case you haven’t been paying attention to Daryl Hannah because she’s one of those Hollywood types who possesses the temerity to speak out on political issues-you know, like Ronald Reagan, Sonny Bono and Arnold Schwarzenegger-this news report should probably begin by informing you that she has been on a crusade against enforced prostitution throughout the world. You remember how Nicole Kidman won an Oscar for apparently doing little more than putting some putty on her nose to reshape it? Well, Daryl Hannah concealed her identity with equally striking results for another movie.
Only thing is, this movie was financed by Hannah with her own money and it’s part documentary and part 60 Minutes expose and part America’s Most Wanted episode. Daryl Hannah has concealed her identity for a part not in order to win an Academy Award, but in order to save children as young as six years old from being forced to have sex with as many as a dozen or more men a day.
Now comes word of what prompted this extraordinary-and extraordinarily under-publicized-crusade of Daryl Hannah, the actress best known for her quirky roles such as the punky replicant in Blade Runner and the one-eyed assassin in Kill Bill. (Or, perhaps, best known as the punching bag for Jackson Browne or the pre-marriage girlfriend of John Kennedy, Jr.) Hannah recently announced that her decision to launch a crusade against the worldwide sex trafficking trade was prompted by the most intensely personal of reasons. Apparently, back in the 1970s when Hannah was a struggling acting student in Los Angeles, she was approached with the offer to go to Las Vegas and shoot an album cover, with the extra lure of all expenses being paid. Things turned wrong once she got there, however. As those paid expenses began to mount, Hannah began to intuit that no debts go unpaid and it wasn’t long before she realized what kind of payment would be expected. It wasn’t until another girl clued her in on the truly desperate situation they could find themselves in, however, that the total extent of the horror began to sink in. After she and the other girl realized that they were on the verge of being sold into prostitution via a sex-slave ring, Hannah and the other girl both managed to flee through a window and escape back to Los Angeles. Hannah says she’s never gone public with the story, but her razor’s edge confrontation with a completely different destiny has always haunted her.
That is why she has taken it upon herself not only to raise awareness of the sex trafficking situation with her film, but to take a hands-on approach. Last year, on a visit to Cambodia, Daryl Hannah not only donned her brunette wig to make an undercover visit to a Cambodian sex slave bordello, but she actually was instrumental in the act of freeing several young girls who were being held hostage. Thanks to her actions, several sex slaves were freed and returned to their families.
Say what you will about Daryl Hannah as an actress or as an environmental activist, but you’ve got to admit one thing. Daryl Hannah is proof that not all blondes are like Paris Hilton.