In a story published by the New York Times on Tuesday, Paltrow, Jolie, Rosanna Arquette (who also spoke to The New Yorker for its exposé on Weinstein, published Tuesday), and other actresses accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct.
“We’re at a point in time when women need to send a clear message that this is over,” Paltrow said. “This way of treating women ends now.”
When Paltrow was 22 and recently cast in the Weinstein production Emma, she claims Weinstein called her to his hotel for a business meeting. There, Paltrow alleges Weinstein tried to massage her and invited her into his bedroom. The actress told the Times she refused Weinstein’s advances and later told her then-boyfriend, Brad Pitt, who confronted Weinstein. (Pitt’s representative confirmed the story to the Times.)
“I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” Paltrow said, adding she felt powerless — especially because Weinstein had just cast her in a star-making part. According to Paltrow, Weinstein urged her to “keep the secret” after he was confronted by Pitt. The actress went on to win an Oscar for her role in Weinstein’s Shakespeare in Love in 1999.
Jolie made similar claims to the Times, alleging she met Weinstein in a hotel room during the release of her film Playing by Heart in the late 1990s. Jolie claims Weinstein made unwanted advances toward her and she rejected him.
“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 in an email to the publication. “This behavior towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable.”
In a statement provided to The New Yorker, Weinstein’s spokeswoman Sallie Hofmeister said: “Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein. Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances.
Mr. Weinstein obviously can’t speak to anonymous allegations, but with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, Mr. Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual. Mr. Weinstein has begun counseling, has listened to the community and is pursuing a better path. Mr. Weinstein is hoping that, if he makes enough progress, he will be given a second chance.”