Actresses are speaking out in support of the women who came forward to detail alleged sexual harassment committed by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, including Meryl Streep, who called the accusations “inexcusable.”
Weinstein, a Flushing native, was fired from his own company Sunday following the allegations brought forward by actresses he has worked with in the past, including Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan, as well as former and current Weinstein Company employees.
His termination came days after the New York Times published a report that Weinstein, the co-chairman of the Weinstein Co., has paid off eight sexual harassment accusers within the past 30 years. The Times, while acting on the request of anonymity, reported that he paid a “young assistant” in New York in 1990, an actress seven years later, an assistant the year following and a model in 2015.
Though Weinstein, 65, said in a statement that his prior behavior with colleagues had “caused a lot of pain,” his attorney Lisa Bloom, who has since resigned as his adviser, told the Times that “many” of the sexual harassment accusations against him were “patently false.”
“This kind of abuse is inexcusable...” - Jennifer Lawrence
Jennifer Lawrence on Tuesday said she was “deeply disturbed” by the news. The “Passengers” actress released a statement to The Daily Beast explaining that she had worked with Weinstein five years ago, without any issues.
“This kind of abuse is inexcusable and absolutely upsetting,” she said. “My heart goes out to all of the women affected by these gross actions. And I want to thank them for their bravery to come forward.”
“Not everybody knew.” - Meryl Streep
Actress Meryl Streep, who worked with Weinstein on a number of projects including “August: Osage County” and “The Iron Lady,” and once referred to him as a “god” during her Academy Awards acceptance speech, penned an exclusive statement for the Huffington Post on Monday following the company’s announcement of his termination. Streep called the women who came forward “heroes” and said the news came as an appalling shock to those who worked with Weinstein.
“One thing can be clarified. Not everybody knew. Harvey supported the work fiercely, was exasperating but respectful with me in our working relationship and with many others with whom he worked professionally,” Streep said, stressing that she did not know about the alleged incidents. “The behavior is inexcusable, but the abuse of power familiar. Each brave voice that is raised, heard and credited by our watchdog media will ultimately change the game.”
“That’s not how a meeting should work.” - Lena Dunham
“Girls” writer/actress Lena Dunham, who also acknowledged the women who came forward for their “bravery,” sent out a series of tweets Sunday night, thanking producer Jenni Konner for “saving her a lot of pain” in the business.
“I remember being super confused by a meeting I’d had and @JenniKonner saying ‘Girl that’s not how a meeting should work,’ ” Dunham tweeted, without specifying who the meeting was with. “Easy to think Weinstein company took swift action but this has actually been the slowest action because they always knew.”
“Please stop holding actresses and women accountable …” - Amber Tamblyn
Dunham retweeted actress Amber Tamblyn, who didn’t hold back on Twitter since the Times’ Thursday publication writing, “please stop holding actresses and women accountable for these silences and shaming them for not coming forward immediately. Stop.” Tamblyn thanked Times reporter Jodi Kantor for “putting in the hard work for women everywhere.”
“I see this as a tipping point.” - Jenni Konner
Screengrabbing a statement from the Times’ followup piece announcing Weinstein’s termination, Kantor called out Dunham’s “Girls” executive producer Jenni Konner as “one of Hollywood’s leading feminists.”
“I see this as a tipping point,” Konner said. “This is the moment we look back on and say, ‘That’s when it all started to change … [this] is going to scare any man in Hollywood using his power for anything but making movies and television.”
“Reprehensible and inexcusable” behavior. - Emmy Rossum
“Shameless” actress Emmy Rossum, tweeted Monday that the “old dinosaur” explanation “doesn’t cut it.”
“DECADES of using power to intimidate women for sexual gain is reprehensible and inexcusable,” she wrote.
“What about the men?” - Jessica Chastain
A Variety headline that called on men to help prevent this behavior toward women from gaining speed in the first place drew the attention of Jessica Chastain, who wrote, “Yes. I’m sick of the media demanding only women speak up. What about the men? Perhaps many are afraid to look at their own behavior…”
“It’s not your fault. I believe you.” - Brie Larson
On Thursday, following the Times’ initial report, actress Brie Larson tweeted in support of the alleged victims.
“As always, I stand with the brave survivors of sexual assault and harassment. It’s not your fault. I believe you,” she wrote.