The New York Times reported this week that legendary producer Harvey Weinstein has a long history of sexual harassment allegations. A few days after that news broke, Weinstein was fired from his own company by the board. Now, several Hollywood stars are speaking out against Weinstein.
According to the Times, Weinstein reached legal settlements with a number of women. Among the women who accused Weinstein of improper behavior are former employees and several actresses, including Ashley Judd. The behavior was also reportedly well known by many others who worked for or with him. Since the story came out, more women have gained the courage to come forward and add their stories to the mix.
Meryl Streep, the undisputed queen of Hollywood, has worked with Weinstein on many projects including the films August: Osage County and The Iron Lady. Streep spoke to HuffPost about the allegations, calling Weinstein’s behavior “disgraceful” and appaling. “The intrepid women who raised their voices to expose this abuse are our heroes,” Streep said. She then insisted that “not everybody knew.” Streep concluded that “the behavior is inexcusable, but the abuse of power familiar.”
Another hugely successful actress whose career Weinstein helped shape also spoke out. Dame Judi Dench, like Streep, insisted that she was unaware of the behavior or allegations. Dench told Newsweek “I was completely unaware of these offenses which are, of course, horrifying, and I offer my sympathy to those who have suffered, and wholehearted support to those who have spoken out.”
Glenn Close, like Streep and Dench, had experience working with Weinstein. Unlike the others, she says that she had been aware “for many years…of the vague rumors that Harvey Weinstein had a pattern of behaving inappropriately around women. Harvey has always been decent to me, but now that the rumors are being substantiated, I feel angry and darkly sad.”
Other Hollywood stars that have spoken out in anger about Weinstein’s behavior include Judd Apatow, Kate Winslet, Lena Dunham, and Julianne Moore. In his tweet about it, actor Mark Ruffalo wrote, “I hope we are now seeing the beginning of the end of these abuses.” As yet another well known and successful abuser is taken to task and the victims are showered with support, hopefully Ruffalo’s sentiment rings true.