Billie Piper speaks out on the importance of recognising the abuse of women
(Credits: Peter Mountain / Netflix)

Netflix News

Billie Piper speaks out on the importance of recognising the abuse of women

Following the sensitive content of her latest project, Scoop, actor Billie Piper has spoken out about the critical need to recognise and combat the abuse of women. It’s a sentence that feels like an obvious one, but time and time again, it’s proven that much progress is still needed.

In the new Netflix film, Piper plays ex-BBC producer Sam McAlister, who set up Prince Andrew’s now infamous Newsnight interview. Dramatising the behind the scenes action as well as the fallout from the interview, it follows the stories of McAlister, presenter Emily Maitlis and the reaction of the royal family. 

As Prince Andrew was questioned about his links with Jeffery Epstein and the accusations surrounding underage girls, the plot of Scoop is heavy with the difficult and sensitive topic of abuse. However, this isn’t one that Piper shies away from.

“Whenever there’s a story about abuse of women, I pay attention,” she said. “I’m an ambassador for Refuge [the domestic abuse charity], so this is something that I feel passionately about: the protection of women and children specifically.”

For Piper, the story of Scoop is one of notoriety and abuse being at play, with this central interview exposing the dark side of power. “The interview, whatever you feel about it, was such an important part of exposing this story,” she continued, discussing how privileged she felt to play a role in retelling the story.

Piper’s belief is that people with power need to be held more accountable to prevent instances like this happening and to protect those without power. She thinks that our focus in media needs to shift to recognise abuse more and meaningless gossip less. “When it comes to people in positions of power, people that have to be accountable, I feel a bit differently,” she explained. “I think we deserve to know the truth about what they’re up to and what they’re doing. More so than, let’s say, Britney Spears on a Friday night.”

After booming to success as a teenager, Piper’s career seems to have moved in a more purposeful direction as she’s got older. In Vogue magazine, she admits to not working a lot, chalking it up to not often liking the scripts she’s sent. But instead, she only wants to give her time to projects she feels passionate about. The topic of abuse and protecting women ticking this box.

“For some reason, there are things that I just become obsessed with, and I often think it’s anything to do with the abuse of women,” she told the magazine. “I just hate it, but I want to know about what has happened too.”