[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
This is so unsettling…
Gianna Hammer, who appeared as a contestant on season 5 of MTV‘s hit show Are You The One? in 2017, is opening up about her time filming the relationship-based series. From the sounds of Hammer’s allegations, things are NOT going well over on that reality TV show.
After first telling her story in a series of TikTok videos back in March, the 25-year-old sat down for a full interview with The Daily Beast that was published on Sunday. In it, she accused MTV’s production team of giving her a prescription medication while she’d been drinking — and later alleged a fellow cast member sexually assaulted her on set.
Hammer explained to the outlet how, prior to filming, she’d been taking a low dosage of the antidepressant medication Zoloft. While she typically always took her prescription at night in her real life, producers insisted that she instead take it first thing in the morning while she was filming. The Ohio native explained that even though she at first resisted that schedule, producers were adamant, telling her (below):
“Their logic was that I wasn’t on too much of it. So, if I took it early in the morning, it wouldn’t really affect me later in the night.”
That’s probably not a smart move by production staff — but sadly, that’s only the tip of the proverbial iceberg here.
Things came to a head for Hammer one night when she’d been drinking alcohol with the rest of the cast, and she got into an angry drunken argument with another cast member. Recalling what happened next, she alleged that producers whisked her away to take another dosage of her prescription:
“[Producers] had walked back into the confessional room with me and that was when the three producers said that I needed to calm down and that they were going to give me one of my medications. This part of the night is something I remember more clearly than anything else. I know that my castmates said that I kept telling them, ‘I’m not supposed to do this when I’m drinking. I’m not supposed to do this when I’m drinking.’ They still said it was OK, they said it wasn’t a high enough dosage or something. So, I took it.”
WTF?! Who forces a person to mix alcohol and prescription pills?? That’s NEVER smart… And add that to the fact that producers are NOT doctors! BTW, co-star Hayden Weaver corroborated that part of Hammer’s story, claiming he was also in the room when she was given the nighttime dosage of her prescription. So scary!!!
The next morning, Hammer claimed she “couldn’t really remember anything” that had happened after taking the second pill. That’s when she was pulled aside by producers who told her she’d gotten into bed with a male cast member, only to (thankfully) be pulled out by other cast mates when they heard her saying “no” to the man.
Fellow cast member Tyranny Todd recalled the incident at that point, telling the outlet (below):
“We went over there to try to get him off of [Gianna] because we were like, ‘This is weird.’ I remember just always being really, really mad because we knew that Gianna was taken advantage of. I can remember it clear as day, he was on top of her and to turn around, like, ‘What the f**k? This is not cool.’”
Yeah… “not cool” is an understatement with the severity of these allegations.
In the aftermath, Hammer recalled how producers claimed “nothing happened” between her and the man, but still asked if she’d like him to be sent home. There was a catch, though — according to Hammer, MTV’s team allegedly guilt-tripped the s**t out of her for even raising such an issue, moaning on and on about how hard they’d worked to bring the guy on the show in the first place.
“They [the producers] made this comment, saying, ‘He flew all the way out here, we did all this testing for him, he has a perfect match in this house, it would be a lot to send him back, he’d have to spend the rest of the time in a hotel by himself.’”
Yeah, SO WHAT?! If he allegedly took advantage of Hammer, who gives a f**k about him having to stay in a hotel by himself?? Ultimately, the production team chose to put him in a different room, and they banned both of them from drinking for the rest of their time on the show. Wow… Talk about not getting it!
On Sunday, in response to Hammer’s bombshell allegations, MTV released their own statement (below) while also confirming they have paused production on their current season and pulled season 5 from all streaming platforms:
“We take these issues very seriously and have paused production/casting to conduct an independent investigation into the allegations, the third party production company and further review our internal safety protocols.”
Lighthearted Entertainment, the production company involved in actually shooting the show for MTV, also released a statement. In it, they denied Hammer’s allegations, noting (below):
“Throughout the eight seasons of the show, no contestant has reported an incident of sexual assault to Lighthearted … We will cooperate with full transparency [with MTV’s investigation].”
Interestingly, in a pair of tweets on Sunday, Hammer straight-up slammed Lighthearted’s denial and claims she has “email proof” about the incident:
Didnt even attempt to sue just asked for acknowledgement and an apology 😂
— Gianna Hammer (@giannahammer) April 19, 2021
Good for her, for keeping those receipts… It’s also important to note this isn’t the first serious situation regarding sexual assault to hit an MTV show. Longtime fans of reality TV may recall Tonya Cooley‘s appearance on The Challenge a decade ago, and her allegation that she was sexually assaulted with a toothbrush during filming.
MTV’s reality shows are entertaining AF, but not at this cost. Even just one sexual assault is one too many. These allegations must be taken seriously as the network investigates!