Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein has been accused of decades of sexual harassment against women. More former employees and actresses have alleged that the Weinstein Company head made inappropriate advances toward them and—in some instances—offered them payment for their silence. In interviews with the NY Times, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie have come out against Weinstein today for harassing them when they were younger.
“We’re at a point in time when women need to send a clear message that this is over," Paltrow says. “This way of treating women ends now.” Paltrow says that Weinstein hired her for the lead in Emma when she was 22 years old. He asked her to come to the Peninsula Beverly Hills hotel for a meeting that ended with him placing his hands on her and encouraging her to go to the bedroom for massages. “I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” she says. Paltrow says she told then-boyfriend Brad Pitt about the incident. He apparently confronted Weinstein and the producer threatened her not to tell anyone else about the harassment. “I thought he was going to fire me,” she said.
Angelina Jolie, who worked with the producer on Playing By Heart in the late '90s, also says that she was harassed in a hotel room incident. “I had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein in my youth, and as a result, chose never to work with him again and warn others when they did,” she disclosed in an email. “This behavior towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable.”
Other actresses who have come out include Rosanna Arquette, a star of Pulp Fiction, and French actress Judith Godrèche.
Paltrow, who grew up in Hollywood, soon became known as the "first lady of Miramax" (Weinstein's former company). He was instrumental in her career, including winning an Oscar for her breakout role in Shakespeare in Love. “I was expected to keep the secret,” she said.
Despite reports that Weinstein's "casting couch" behavior was well known in Hollywood, some prominent actors have come out that they were unaware of Weinstein's behavior. Both Meryl Streep and Ben Affleck denounced the behavior while not admitting to be privy to it.
Weinstein was terminated from his position at the company that he owned a 42% share in.
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