In 2010, it was French actress
Spotted over Hollywood on Tuesday.
Remarkable couple of days that should be remembered for a long time in Hollywood and beyond. New York Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey followed up last week's revelations on Harvey Weinstein's sexual predation of women under his control with a new piece that got prominent actresses and other victims on the record, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie. At the New Yorker, Ronan Farrow put more than a dozen of Weinstein's victims on the record and included audio tape of a 2015 sting that the NYPD ran to catch Weinstein in the act. It worked — but the New York DA declined to prosecute.
By the end of Tuesday, Weinstein's wife Georgina Chapman said she was leaving the once-feared movie producer, USC announced it was declining Weinstein's offer of $5 million to fund a foundation for female directors, brothers Harvey and Bob Weinstein were estranged, and the future of the Weinstein Co. itself was in doubt.
"I know Paltrow/Jolie will get attention," Kantor tweeted. "But pls read accounts of the lesser-known women. You will not forget them."
1. Heroes of the story
Brian Stelter of CNN Money led his Tuesday night media newsletter with a simple but very worthy tribute.
Ashley Judd. Rose McGowan. Asia Argento. Lauren Sivan. Rosanna Arquette. Jessica Barth. Emma de Caunes. Dawn Dunning. Lucia Evans. Louisette Geiss. Judith Godreche. Katherine Kendall. Laura Madden. Emily Nestor. Gwyneth Paltrow. Angelina Jolie. Mira Sorvino.
These are some of the women who spoke on the record to either the NYT or Farrow about the sexual abuse they endured from Harvey Weinstein through the years. The accounts of hotel room massages and indecent exposures, gropings, unwanted sex acts, imperiled careers, crushed dreams and in some cases lasting damage are heartbreaking. Look at the list and think about the bodies of work of some of these women — what they have given us and how they have been done wrong.
"These are just some of the women who have courageously spoken out about encounters with Harvey Weinstein," Stelter wrote. "They deserve a tremendous amount of credit for speaking out."
Now realize it's probable that these are not the only victims of Hollywood's most powerful and winked-about creep — and that Weinstein is not the only creep who is taking advantage of women in show business.
Paltrow told the NYT she was 22 years old when Weinstein cast her in "Emma" and summoned her to his hotel suite in Beverly Hills. It was just the two of them, and Paltrow said that Weinstein placed his hands on her and kept suggesting they head to the bedroom for massages. "I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified," Paltrow told the NYT. She left and told a few people, including her boyfriend, Brad Pitt, who later confronted Weinstein and told him to keep his hands off Paltrow. Weinstein in turn chewed out Paltrow for telling Pitt about their encounter.
Jolie told the New York Times that Harvey Weinstein also made his unwanted advances on her in a hotel room. It was the late 1990's. "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," Jolie said. "This behavior towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable."
Paltrow, whose family roots in Hollywood run much deeper than Harvey Weinstein's, said "we're at a point in time when women need to send a clear message that this is over. This way of treating women ends now."
2. Asia Argento
The Italian actress and director is an unforgettable part of Ronan Farrow's story in the New Yorker
, published Tuesday.
Since the establishment of the first studios a century ago, there have been few movie executives as dominant, or as domineering, as Harvey Weinstein. As the co-founder of the production-and-distribution companies Miramax and the Weinstein Company, he helped to reinvent the model for independent films, with movies such as “Sex, Lies, and Videotape,” “The English Patient,” “Pulp Fiction,” “The Crying Game,” “Shakespeare in Love,” and “The King’s Speech.” Beyond Hollywood, he has exercised his influence as a prolific fund-raiser for Democratic Party candidates, including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Weinstein combined a keen eye for promising scripts, directors, and actors with a bullying, even threatening, style of doing business, inspiring both fear and gratitude. His movies have earned more than three hundred Oscar nominations, and, at the annual awards ceremonies, he has been thanked more than almost anyone else in movie history, just after Steven Spielberg and right before God.
For more than twenty years, Weinstein has also been trailed by rumors of sexual harassment and assault. This has been an open secret to many in Hollywood and beyond, but previous attempts by many publications, including The New Yorker, to investigate and publish the story over the years fell short of the demands of journalistic evidence. Too few people were willing to speak, much less allow a reporter to use their names, and Weinstein and his associates used nondisclosure agreements, monetary payoffs, and legal threats to suppress these myriad stories. Asia Argento, an Italian film actress and director, told me that she did not speak out until now—Weinstein, she told me, forcibly performed oral sex on her—because she feared that Weinstein would “crush” her. “I know he has crushed a lot of people before,” Argento said. “That’s why this story—in my case, it’s twenty years old; some of them are older—has never come out.”
Argento's first encounter with Weinstein was in 1997, when she was 21 and a rising star in Italy. She says a male producer took her to Weinstein's room at Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc near Cannes and left them alone. Weinstein used the massage come on, ignored her repeated "nos" and forced himself on Argento orally. She says the rape still affects her today, but "what complicates the story," Farrow writes, is that Argento later became close to Weinstein for a few years and had sex with him several times. "I didn’t want to anger him," she explains.
She describes ways that her first encounter with Weinstein haunts her today. In 2000, she made a film, "Scarlet Diva," that has a creepy character who is a heavyset producer who tries to get her (she's the star) to give him a hotel room massage and forces sex on her.
Argento and her boyfriend, the chef and food personality Anthony Bourdain, have been tweeting about Weinstein since the revelations began last week. Some examples:
3. Naked at Cannes
"I heard the shower go on in the bathroom,” she said. “I was, like, What the fuck, is he taking a shower?” Weinstein came out, naked and with an erection. “What are you doing?” she asked. Weinstein demanded that she lie on the bed and told her that many other women had done so before her.
“I was very petrified,” de Caunes said. “But I didn’t want to show him that I was petrified, because I could feel that the more I was freaking out, the more he was excited.” She added, “It was like a hunter with a wild animal. The fear turns him on.” De Caunes told Weinstein that she was leaving, and he panicked. “We haven’t done anything!” she remembered him saying. “It’s like being in a Walt Disney movie!”
“I looked at him and I said—it took all my courage—but I said, ‘I’ve always hated Walt Disney movies.’ And then I left. I slammed the door.” She was shaking on the stairs down to the lobby. A director she was working with on the TV show confirmed that she arrived at the studio distraught and that she recounted what had happened. Weinstein called relentlessly over the next few hours, offering de Caunes gifts and repeating that nothing had happened....
Over the years, she said, she’s heard similar accounts from friends. “I know that everybody—I mean everybody—in Hollywood knows that it’s happening,” de Caunes said. “He’s not even really hiding. I mean, the way he does it, so many people are involved and see what’s happening. But everyone’s too scared to say anything.”