Keira Knightley's abuse fear
Sep 5, 2008, 9:45 GMT
09/03/2008 - Keira Knightley - "The Duchess" London Premiere - Arrivals - Leicester Square - London, UK © Solarpix / PR Photos
Keira Knightley has hired a bodyguard after being verbally abused on the street.
The actress has been left shaken after a passer-by jumped out at her and screamed obscenities as she walked alone near her home in Richmond, London.
The 23-year-old star spent much of her time in a private room at the after-party following the premiere of the 'The Duchess' on Wednesday (03.09.08) as she feared for her safety.
She said: "The other day I was walking down the street and was really thinking about this book I'd been sent. You know when you're really in another place. Somebody jumped out and went, 'Keira Knightley!'
"I got such a shock, I couldn't say anything because I'd been thinking about the book and this guy took incredible offence and started hurling the most amazing abuse.
'He said, 'Who the f**k do you think you f***ing are? You're such a ****.' All this, and I'm completely on my own."
The star - who has played several strong female leads in her acting career - took boyfriend Rupert Friend to the premiere and party for extra support.
She added: "It's a weird thing to have to deal with, not on a day-to-day basis, but it's happened enough to make me quite jumpy."