Harvey Weinstein: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg

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Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:30 am

Actor Romola Garai felt 'violated' after Harvey Weinstein encounter: British star adds to allegations against film mogul, describing encounter in which he wore only a dressing gown
by Hannah Ellis-Petersen
October 10, 2017

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Romola Garai: ‘You can’t find an actress that doesn’t have that kind of story about Harvey.’ Photograph: Mike Marsland/WireImage

Harvey Weinstein auditioned an 18-year-old Romola Garai while wearing only a dressing gown in an encounter at the Savoy Hotel that the British actor described as humiliating and “an abuse of power”.

The actor, who starred in Atonement and the BBC series The Hour, told the Guardian she was left feeling “violated”. It is the latest of allegations of harassment and inappropriate behaviour by the Hollywood mogul.

“Like every other woman in the industry, I’ve had an ‘audition’ with Harvey Weinstein, where I’d actually already had the audition but you had to be personally approved by him,” said Garai. “So I had to go to his hotel room in the Savoy, and he answered the door in his bathrobe. I was only 18. I felt violated by it, it has stayed very clearly in my memory.”

Garai said the incident in London was indicative of Weinstein’s approach to women in the film industry, consistently putting young female actors, often desperate to get a break in the industry, into “humiliating situations” to prove “he had the power to do it”.

“The transaction was just that I was there,” said Garai, who once she was in the hotel room with Weinstein just sat on a chair and had a brief discussion about film. “The point was that he could get a young woman to do that, that I didn’t have a choice, that it was humiliating for me and that he had the power. It was an abuse of power.”


In an exposé in the New York Times last week, it was alleged that Weinstein, one of the most powerful people in Hollywood who produced films such as Pulp Fiction, had been sexually harassing women in the film industry for more than two decades.

It was alleged that he had reached at least eight settlements with women he had sexually harassed, and that he would invite women to his hotel room under the guise of work and then greet them naked or ask them to massage him or watch him shower.

Among his accusers are the actors Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan, and since they went public with their allegations against Weinstein, others have come forward. The writer and artist Liza Campbell said Weinstein invited her to his hotel room and asked her to get in the bath with him, and a US TV journalist said Weinstein masturbated in front of her.

Weinstein had taken a leave of absence from his company but on Sunday night the board announced he had been sacked after new allegations of misconduct. On Monday evening the NYT reported that, hours before the board announcement, Weinstein emailed associates in Hollywood asking them to help stop him being fired.

Actors including Meryl Streep and Judi Dench, both of whom have starred in several Weinstein films, publicly condemned the producer, denying any knowledge of his actions, while Emma Thompson described him as a “predatory man”.

Streep added that the allegations had “appalled those of us whose work [Weinstein] championed, and those whose good and worthy causes he supported”.

Weinstein has expressed regret for his inappropriate behaviour towards women stretching back decades, saying “I own my mistakes”, but his lawyers say he also denies many of the allegations made against him.

Garai told the Guardian she “couldn’t be less surprised” by the allegations against Weinstein and said the fact that the film industry was “very very very misogynistic” had meant Weinstein’s behaviour was accepted. “You can’t find an actress that doesn’t have that kind of story about Harvey,” she said.

Describing her hotel room encounter with Weinstein, Garai said she knew back then it was “weird” but that she “just tried to make out like it was normal because as far as I was concerned it was a job interview”. “I knew something had happened to me that I didn’t like and that I felt belittled by but I didn’t feel like I had the right to complain.”

She added: “The people who asked me to go to his hotel room did so with an eye-rolling look of, ‘This is weird but you just have to do it, you’re not in any danger’. It was clear they were uncomfortable asking me to do it, but that it had to be done.

“I remember the feeling of seeing him opening the door in the dressing gown and thinking, ‘Oh god, this is a casting couch’. But I guess it’s now only as a much older woman that I understood what it meant.
At the time I understood myself to be a commodity and that my value in the industry rested almost exclusively on the way I looked and I didn’t really think of myself to be any more than that.”

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Garai said she had never thought to raise the incident until now because in the film industry people would be “shocked I even thought it was an issue”. Weinstein’s alleged behaviour towards women has been described as an “open secret”, and something Garai affirmed, saying he was one of the most notorious culprits for this sort of behaviour in the film industry.

“It’s kind of amazing to me that this is news, it’s just so well known in the industry,” she said. “There are so many stories about him sending weird texts and harassing actresses, telling them he’ll give them a part if they come to dinner with him – that’s really really common. And it’s well known that he’s had relationships with a lot of people that he’s worked with, or have worked for him.
Given how powerful he is, and given that they are always with women who are a lot younger than him, I think there is clearly an imbalance of power in those relationships.”

Garai landed the role in Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights but her uncomfortable experiences with Weinstein did not end there. During filming she said she was put under enormous pressure to lose weight and was constantly told she was fat, with food taken from her trailer and people paid to make sure she did not eat anything.

Garai said that while the instructions came from lower-level producers, she believed it was Weinstein putting the pressure on for her to lose weight to “fit his expectations of what a movie star should look like”.

“Harvey’s behaviour was accepted but it was accepted because the industry knows that what people want to see on screen is women who are thin and beautiful with big tits and don’t say very much,” she said.

Garai said the incident with Weinstein was the most “explicitly problematic” of her career, but that only now, over a decade later, had she really come to terms with it. She added: “If someone asked me now to go to their hotel room and a guy was in a dressing gown I’m 100% sure that I would leave and say: ‘Would you like to come down to the bar and have the meeting with me when you’re dressed’.”

Meanwhile the British prime minister, Theresa May, expressed her concerns over the allegations against Weinstein but her spokesman said the issue of whether he should keep the CBE he was awarded in 2004 for services to the film industry “was not one for Downing Street”.
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:04 am

USA Gymnastics Failed to Protect Athletes From Sex Abuse: Report
by Tracy Connor and Gabe Gutierrez
June 27, 2017

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The investigator hired by USA Gymnastics in the midst of a sprawling sexual abuse scandal says the number of athletes victimized is "far higher" than the hundreds previously reported and that the organization needs a "complete culture change" to protect young people.

Ex-prosecutor Deborah Daniels said in her report that she cannot estimate how many club-level and elite gymnasts have been harmed over the years because the sport's governing body, which is fighting a mountain of lawsuits, didn't ask her to look into past wrongdoing.

"This was a forward-looking report and not a rear-view mirror report," Daniels said after the USA Gymnastics board of directors accepted her recommendations on how to keep kids safe.

It's a goal that she said will require a mindset shift in a sport that pairs pre-pubescent girls with authority figures who can make or break their gold-medal dreams and that has been accused of prizing success over safety.

"I think there's probably fault throughout the organization," Paul Parilla, chairman of the USA Gymnastics board of directors, told NBC News. "Who can say that we have done everything it's possible to do to protect athletes?"

USA Gymnastics, which selects the U.S. Olympic teams, tapped Daniels to examine its policies after it was rocked by allegations in the Indianapolis Star that it had mishandled a raft of molestation cases, including accusations that team doctor Larry Nassar preyed on scores of girls for years.

John Manly, an attorney who represents many of Nassar's accusers, denounced the resulting report as a public relations ploy "designed to divert attention from who at USA Gymnastics knew about molestation by Larry Nassar and others and when they knew it."


"The report calls for a change in culture but those who created the toxic culture remain in charge of the organization," Manly said.

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Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, in court for a hearing on sex abuse charges. NBC News

Nassar's case merited just a few mentions in the 100-page report, which cited it as an example of delayed reporting of suspected abuse. USA Gymnastics admits it waited five weeks to notify law enforcement after his behavior was flagged, but Daniels didn't assign any blame.

"My charge was to look at the policies in place and the practices in place," she said. "I did not go into what any person may or may not have done in the past."

Among the troubling policies she highlighted:

USA Gymnastics used a "grievance procedure" to handle reports of abuse, and until 2013 required an athlete or their parent to file a written complaint to the very people with influence over their success.

There was no written protocol for how to handle allegations of abuse.

Clubs and members were historically not required to report sexual misconduct or other abuse to USA Gymnastics or law enforcement.

Members suspended for sexual misdeeds were able to get new coaching jobs, in part because USA Gymnastics did not publicize the penalties.

USA Gymnastics did not leverage its control over membership privileges to ensure clubs adopt and enforce appropriate policies.

The USAG board spends "very little" time on child-abuse issues and its members receive no training. Until recently, no staff member was assigned to athlete protection.

There's no certification process for coaches.


"Over time, the practices of USA Gymnastics have not kept up with best practices in the field of child abuse protection, allowing for significant gaps and exposures regarding the prevention and reporting of child sexual abuse within the sport," the report said.

Among Daniels' recommendations: a requirement that any suspected abuse be reported "immediately" to law enforcement, a menu of sanctions for failure to report, penalties aimed at rooting out "grooming" of athletes by potential abusers, and a database of coaches so abuse can be tracked systemwide.

One section of the report tackled the National Team Training Center in Texas — better known as "The Ranch" owned by famed coaches Bela and Marta Karolyi — where elite gymnasts are readied for the world stage.

The gymnasts, some as young as 11, are isolated from their parents — cell service is spotty — and rely on an "athlete representative" who is also on the selection committee for the national team, making it unlikely an abused child would confide in her, the report said.

Gold medalist Dominique Moceanu, a member of the 1996 Olympic team and a longtime critic of gymnastics' winning-is-everything ethos, called the recommendations a "no-brainer" and said it was a shame that it took a major scandal to force a revamp.

"It's years too late, but it's obviously a start," Moceanu, who says she was subjected to emotional abuse as a young athlete, told NBC News.

USA Gymnastics — which was a no-show at a congressional hearing on its handling of abuse allegations earlier this year — approved Daniels' report unanimously.

"USA Gymnastics is very sorry anyone has been harmed during his or her gymnastics career," Parilla said.

He said the organization's leaders "have no way" of estimating how many of its 200,000 members may be victims. Daniels said that question was not part of her mission, but her history as a prosecutor leads her to believe the cases that have already come to light represent just part of the problem.

"According to published reports, hundreds of gymnasts over the last 20 years have reported abuse at the hands of coaches or other authority figures in the sport, many of whom were involved with USA Gymnastics as members or contractors," she wrote.

"And given the understandable reticence of those who have suffered abuse to come forward, the true number of those victimized over that period of time cannot be estimated but is surely far higher."

Jamie White, a Michigan attorney who represents 17 girls and women who are suing Nassar and USA Gymnastics, said it remains to be seen if USA Gymnastics is capable of the transformation called for in the report.

"A plan is only as good as its implementation," he said, noting that Daniels did not call for a leadership shakeup.

"I would find it hard to believe that the same people can fix a problem that has festered for years under their watch," he said.

USA Gymnastics is in the middle of looking for a new chief executive after its longtime leader resigned under pressure following a judge's release of documents in a Georgia lawsuit that alleges the organization bungled sex abuse cases.

But Parilla said he has no plans to step down as head of the board, saying that better training will give the leadership the tools it needs to keep kids safe.

"Basically, we thought we were doing a lot," he said. "We obviously can do better and we need to do better."
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:14 am

More Gymnasts Testify About How Larry Nassar Sexually Abused Them
by Dvora Meyers
5/26/17 6:01pm

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Photo credit: CNN

The preliminary hearing in the criminal case against former Michigan State and USA Gymnastics physician Larry Nassar continued today in a Michigan court, with four victims testifying about how they say the doctor sexually abused them under the guise of medical treatments. This hearing was a continuation of the proceedings that started on May 12. Nassar had pleaded not guilty to all of the charges.

Today’s hearing began with the cross examination of Victim D by the defense attorneys. (She had been questioned by the prosecution three weeks prior.) The focus of the questioning, at least initially, was Victim D’s injury history and whether or not her condition improved after being treated by Nassar.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Victim D said her discomfort level improved as treatments with Nassar went on. Def attys asked the first 2 women to testify this same ?


The defense also wanted to question the victim as to whether or not she had filed a civil suit against Nassar, but the judge stopped that line of questioning because the victim is a minor and can’t hire an attorney for herself. On redirect, the prosecutor asked the witness whether or not Nassar had asked for her consent before the penetration. She said he had not, and she then differentiated between the penetrative parts of the “treatment” and the non-penetrative parts.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Victim D asked she felt when Nassar digitally penetrated her: "Uncomfortably" " yucky."

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Asked how she felt during other parts of medical appointments: "I felt fine and those were helpful."
7:13 AM - May 26, 2017


After a brief recess to determine which members of the media could remain in the courtroom, the hearing continued with the questioning of Victim A, a teenage gymnast at Twistars, the club that Nassar had been affiliated with until the first round of abuse allegations last September. It’s at Twistars that Victim A first encountered Nassar, where he treated her for a rib injury.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
She first saw him at Twistars when she was about 9-10 yrs old. Says Nassar put his hand up her leotard, massaging and digitally penetrating.
7:43 AM - May 26, 2017


Later, when Victim A was 11 and dealing with a foot injury, she went to Nassar’s clinic office with her father. She said her family knew Nassar professionally through Michigan State.

Nassar told the victim’s father that her treatment would take awhile and gave her a pair of baggy shorts to change into. The victim was not wearing any underwear. When Nassar returns, he was alone and not wearing gloves, she said. Almost immediately, he digitally penetrated her, which greatly confused her.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
"I didn't understand how touching would help my heel issue. Then I was embarrassed," Victim A says. Goes into detail regarding penetration
7:50 AM - May 26, 2017


Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
"He was quite sweaty and very into it, I guess you would say?" Victim A says he's leaning over her on the table, rubbing her thigh.
7:52 AM - May 26, 2017


She said no one else was in the room before the massage and no consent or prior notice had been given. Victim A said that she didn’t tell her parents because she believed it was legitimate medical treatment. Victim A did note that when her mother, a doctor, accompanied her to Nassar, he didn’t penetrate her on those visits.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Her mother is a medical professional who knew Nassar. When her mom would go w/ her to treatment, Nassar did not penetrate her, she says.
7:57 AM - May 26, 2017


Victim A said that the gymnasts at Twistars would discuss Nassar’s methods among themselves.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Says she and other gymnasts would talk about Nassar. "He's kind of touchy," one gymnast said. "Yeah, but that's Nassar," they'd all say.
7:55 AM - May 26, 2017


When Victim A heard about Rachael Denhollander’s and Jane Doe’s allegations against Nassar in the Indianapolis Star last year, she decided to tell her parents about what had happened to her. Her mother called the police, who interviewed her at Small Talk, a place for kids who had been sexually abused. She initially told the police she wasn’t penetrated because she didn’t know what it meant.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
She told police interviewer that she wasn't "penetrated" because she didn't know what penetrated meant, thought it involved rapid movement.
8:00 AM - May 26, 2017


Victim A also spoke about how the realization about the abuse has affected her.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Assistant AG asked if the process since coming forward has been easy. She said it hasn't.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
"There have been lots of nights where I just cried and cried."
8:03 AM - May 26, 2017


Victim A said that it wasn’t until she read the account in the Star that she better understood what had happened to her because the details in Denhollander’s story closely resembled her own experience.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Victim A said the mention in the @indystar story about lack of gloves was a red flag for her.
8:25 AM - May 26, 2017


After lunch, two more victims testified. Victim E, now 18, started gymnastics at age 2. She was 12 when she first started seeing Nassar.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
"It made me very happy to be seen by him, because he was the best of the best," Victim E says of gymnastics posters, celebrity signatures
10:43 AM - May 26, 2017


Victim E said that when she was 13, Nassar penetrated her during treatment, claiming it was myofascial release.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Victim E says Dr. Nassar inserted two fingers inside her vagina. "He made certain comments, does this feel better? I said it felt better."
10:46 AM - May 26, 2017


According to the victim, Nassar never discussed penetration with her or her father.

Nassar also engaged in grooming behaviors, giving the victim a present shortly after the 2012 Olympics.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
At the same appointment, 5 days after 2012 Olympics, he handed her an Olympic pin. Said he "thought of all his gymnasts, especially me."
10:51 AM - May 26, 2017


Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
She was 13 at the time. Victim E says Nassar told her he "wanted to make sure I got one," referring to the pin. Says she felt special.
10:51 AM - May 26, 2017


This was the only time that Nassar penetrated her. She said she indicated to her father afterwards that Nassar had done something weird.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Victim E said a physical therapist later performed myofascial release on her, but it did not include digital vaginal penetration.
10:55 AM - May 26, 2017


Victim E said that the exercises Nassar gave her to do at home helped her but she didn’t feel that what he did during the appointments did much to alleviate her pain.

Matt Mencarini @MattMencarini
Asked why she told him it felt better, Victim E said, "I said it felt better because I wanted him to stop what he was doing."
11:06 AM - May 26, 2017


Like several other women who have come forward, Victim E said that the account in the Star helped her realize she had been sexually abused during that appointment.

During cross examination, Shannon Smith, one of two defense lawyers on Nassar’s team, opened by talking about the fact that she has a daughter who does gymnastics at Victim E’s gym.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Ummm defense attorney says her kids go to the same gym as Victim E and Victim E has taught her kids
11:02 AM - May 26, 2017


Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
"You don't recognize me, correct?' Smith asks. "Correct." "My kids are not as good as you are," Smith laughs.
11:02 AM - May 26, 2017


Smith then focused on the issue of gloves, or the lack thereof, during Nassar’s penetrative treatments. (They did this with the previous witness.) Many of the victims have said that the absence of gloves during treatments to the genital area was one of the indications that something was amiss; the defense is trying to make the case that this is not as significant as the prosecution and victims are saying it is.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Another big point for the defense: that Rachael Denhollander's article made a "big deal" about not using gloves
11:12 AM - May 26, 2017


Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Basically, the defense is trying to point out that alleged victims "assume" that not wearing gloves is a giveaway that's something wrong
11:13 AM - May 26, 2017


Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Looks like they're gearing up for an argument that Nassar did have a valid reason for not wearing gloves, and then say women misunderstood
11:14 AM - May 26, 2017


Smith also questioned her about the gift Nassar gave her, pointing out that Nassar gave it to her in front of her father and indicated that Nassar brought back pins for many other patients. Victim E agreed that this was accurate

The final witness to testify was Victim B, who was treated by Nassar for severe back pain when she was 11. Like several others before her, she said that a parent was in the room while Nassar treated her but that her mother’s view was obstructed. She said that Nassar digitally penetrated [her] vagina during her during treatment and she never gave him permission to do this.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Victim B says Nassar once asked her, "is this alright, goof?" Was that a nickname she used, prosecutor asks? No, she says.
11:54 AM - May 26, 2017


She said that during her last visit, he gave her leotard.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Gave her the leotard as they were leaving, B says. Doesn't recall him saying anything. Felt "very confused. We weren't close at all."
11:57 AM - May 26, 2017


Victim B said she first told her parents about what Nassar had done to her after she read the Star’s story on the first allegations.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Victim B says she reads the articles, sees that Nassar claims he never uses vaginal penetration. "That's when I knew it was sexual assault."
12:03 PM - May 26, 2017


The defense would seize upon Victim B’s belated awareness that she had been abused (as they did with previous witnesses) to suggest that the Star article influenced them.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
Would appear that the defense will argue that 1) it's only after hearing abuse allegations that these witnesses think they were abused, too
12:18 PM - May 26, 2017


Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
And 2) that witnesses are taking the word of other women, like Denhollander, that what happened to them was abuse.
12:19 PM - May 26, 2017


Victim B said that the fact that Nassar never sought consent for penetration was problematic. The defense attorney pointed out that her mother drove her to her appointments with Nassar, but didn’t directly address the issue of whether or not she and her mother, since she was a minor, consented to an invasive procedure involving penetration.

Kate Wells @KateLouiseWells
How you doing, kiddo, judge asks. "That wasn't fun," B says, tearing up. "better than the dentist?" "I'd much rather go to the dentist."
12:27 PM - May 26, 2017


The next preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 23
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:30 am

Former Elite Gymnast Speaks Out Against Larry Nassar, Doctor Accused Of Sexually Abusing Dozens Of Athletes: "I Just Trusted Him"
by Dvora Meyers
4/19/17 5:17pm

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Yesterday, Kamerin Moore, a former junior elite gymnast, posted a powerful, wrenching video testimony detailing the sexual abuse she endured at the hands of former national team physician Dr. Larry Nassar, who is currently in jail awaiting trial on sexual assault charges as well as federal child pornography charges. He has pleaded not guilty on all counts.

Moore, who did not respond to requests for comment, trained alongside 2012 Olympic gold medalist Jordyn Wieber for part of her career at Twistars under the tutelage of John Geddert, who has been listed as a defendant in a Larry Nassar-related lawsuit. Moore was frequently injured as a gymnast, which meant that she ended up spending a lot of time with Nassar, who volunteered at Twistars. According to the video, she saw him as a patient between the ages of 11 and 18, seeing him, on average, two or three times a month.

In the video, Moore goes into detail about the so-called “treatment” she was subjected to when she was 13 years old and alone with Nassar.

“This treatment is where he would rub out your back or your hamstrings with one arm or one hand and he would use his other hand to do pressure points or massage on, in, around your genital area. Yes, I say ‘in’ because, at least in my own experience, it was invasive…He would actually put his fingers inside of you. To be clear about this, it was skin-on-skin contact. He would go under your clothing with no gloves on.”


Though it made her very uncomfortable, Moore didn’t question what Nassar was doing to her. “As a little girl, I wasn’t ever questioning a well-respected doctor if their techniques were legitimate. I just trusted him that he was doing the right thing,” she explains.

Moore recounts one particularly disturbing incident at Nassar’s MSU office. The doctor asked her if he could videotape himself performing the “treatment” on her. He claimed that he wanted to make a video so he could train other doctors in how to do this particular procedure.

“To be very clear about what he was asking: he was asking as a 40-year-old man or however old he was, to videotape himself touching a 13-year-old girl’s naked private parts. And if nothing else, if he was a well-respected doctor still and he was a good person and they hadn’t found thousands of images and videos of child pornography on his devices, this would still be wrong.”


Moore says that even though she was just 13, she stood up to Nassar and refused. “I said no. I stood up for myself and said absolutely not.”

She says that this was the last time she got that treatment done, and estimates that Nassar had probably performed that “treatment” on her eight to 10 times. The reason the abuse ceased, she says, was that she pretended to feel better.

“I lied to my coaches. I lied to him. I lied to my mom. I lied to everyone and said that my back and hamstrings were feeling better and that I wasn’t in pain anymore so that I didn’t have to have these treatments done.”


Moore explains that she didn’t tell anyone what had happened because she was so young and was confused. “I was a little girl. I was not equipped to handle that situation at all.” Also, some of her teammates had experienced the same thing. “That kind of gave me peace of mind that even if it was uncomfortable, maybe it was legitimate.”

As with many women who have accused Nassar of abuse, Moore, now 21, says she only came to trust her own experiences over the last six months, as news reports made broader patterns clear.

“Now that I’m 21 and I can actually put the pieces together, it all makes perfect sense,” she says.

Moore speaks about the training course that she took in order to become a gymnastics coach. A part of that course entailed learning how to spot the signs of a child predator. She realized that Nassar checked every box on the predator checklist.

“When I did that course, I thought back to Larry and all of the things he used to do. He used to volunteer his time with kids, which made him look like an amazing person but he was really volunteering his time so he could abuse children. He would tell me secrets, very, very personal secrets about himself and his family and he would even cry to me about things, which is just an extremely inappropriate thing to do to a 13-year-old. But he would do that so he could get close to you and make you feel like you guys could share secrets with each other and that you could trust him. He would talk crap about your coaches to you so you would feel like he was your buddy, he was your friend, that you could talk to him about anything.”


Moore says that coming to terms over the last six months with what Nassar did to her has been incredibly difficult. After she found out what really happened to her, she felt disgusting. “I wanted to take 10 showers and just scrub my skin off. I can’t explain why I felt that way. I just felt dirty,” she explains.

“This affected me really horribly. Honestly, the past six months have kind of sucked. I started isolating myself from people. I have a really, really, really hard time trusting anyone because, like I said, someone I trusted more than almost anyone in the world ended up being someone who hurt me so immensely.”


When Moore looks back on herself at that time—going to gymnastics, doing her schoolwork, hanging out with her friends and family—she wishes she could somehow communicate with her younger self. “[I] want scream into the past, ‘Something’s wrong! Please tell someone how you’re feeling because something is so wrong!’”
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 9:33 pm

Nathan Lane Says Harvey Weinstein Threw Him Against a Wall at Hillary Clinton's Birthday Party
by Stephanie Petit
October 9, 2017 AT 8:44AM EDT

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Amid the allegations of sexual harassment against Harvey Weinstein, Broadway funnyman Nathan Lane recounted an incident where the producer attacked him at Hillary Clinton‘s birthday party in 2000.

“The Birdcage” star was the emcee at the event thrown by the 65-year-old mogul, a longtime supporter of the Clintons, and Weinstein blew up at the actor for telling a comb-over joke about Rudy Giuliani, reports Page Six.

“This is my f–king show, we don’t need you,” Weinstein reportedly said to Lane, tossing the actor against a wall.

During an interview at the New Yorker Festival on Saturday night, Lane recalled firing back, “You can’t hurt me, I don’t have a film career.”


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DAVID M. BENETT/GETTY IMAGES; DAVID FISHER/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK

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DAVID HUME KENNERLY/GETTY IMAGES

On Thursday, The New York Times published an article in which eight women, including actress Ashley Judd, spoke out against Weinstein, accusing him of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior.

Weinstein responded to the allegations in the report, saying he was working with a therapist to address his issues head-on. “I appreciate the way I’ve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it,” he said. “Though I’m trying to do better, I know I have a long way to go.”

Weinstein’s then-attorney Lisa Bloom said in a statement that her client “denies many of the accusations as patently false,” though Weinstein said that he “bear[s] responsibility for my actions” in an interview to The New York Post on Friday. Another lawyer for Weinstein, Charles Harder, said the mogul has plans to sue the New York Times. (Bloom announced she was resigning from advising Weinstein on Saturday afternoon.)

Similar allegations have continued to pour in, including from British aristocrat Liza Campbell, who claimed the producer invited her to join him in the bath at a hotel room, while Lauren Sivan told the Huffington Post that Weinstein allegedly masturbated in front of her.

After previously announcing the mogul would take an “indefinite leave of absence,” the Weinstein Company announced that Weinstein was removed from the company on Sunday.

“In light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days, the directors of The Weinstein Company — Robert Weinstein, Lance Maerov, Richard Koenigsberg and Tarak Ben Ammar — have determined, and have informed Harvey Weinstein, that his employment with The Weinstein Company is terminated, effective immediately,” the Weinstein Company said in a statement.
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 9:40 pm

British Aristocrat Liza Campbell Says Harvey Weinstein Propositioned Her to ‘Jump in the Bath’ with Him
by Stephanie Petit
October 8, 2017 AT 12:48

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After the New York Times published a report about allegations of sexual harassment made against Harvey Weinstein, British artist and writer Liza Campbell is sharing her own uncomfortable experience with the Hollywood producer.

Campbell, whose late father was the 6th Earl of Cawdor, recounted an incident in which she claims Weinstein invited her to his hotel room under the guise of chatting about work only to invite her to “jump in the bath” with him, she said in a story for The Sunday Times.

Campbell says she and the 65-year-old powerhouse film executive met when they shared a cab in London.

“He invited me to see a screening of his new film. He was a producer, but not well known then,” she said. “I went with a friend. It was a frat film. It was terrible and we sneaked out.”

Ten years later, after separating from her husband, Campbell was struggling to find a job she could manage while raising her two children alone. However, she says “out of the blue” she got a call from Weinsten with a “godsend” job as a freelance script reader for Miramax.

After she critiqued scripts for Shakespeare in Love and The Usual Suspects, the scripts abruptly stopped coming, she says.

“A few months on, another call from Weinstein arrived, asking me how work was going,” she said. “I told him everything had stuttered to a halt. He said: ‘You better come to my hotel and we’ll sort this out.’ ”


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ALAN DAVIDSON/SILVERHUB/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK; DAVID M BENETT/DAVE BENETT/GETTY IMAGES

Campbell arranged a meeting at Weinstein’s hotel room a few days later. Although she was greeted by an assistant and there were others in the suite when she arrived, she recalled that they all “vanished.”

“He sat down, chatted for a few minutes and then excused himself and left the room through a far door, where I could see a short passage that connected to the bedroom and the bathroom. I assumed he had gone for a pee,” she said. “I could hear him moving around and suddenly the sound of bath taps running. ‘What do you say we both jump in the bath?’ he hollered. I could hear the thump of shoes being taken off and felt shocked that the meeting had turned sleazy.”

Immediately enraged, Campbell said it took her a moment to process the situation. Meanwhile, Weinstein continued, “Come on, it’ll be fun. We can drink champagne. You can soap me — whaddaya say?

“What I said very loudly was, ‘If you come back into this room with no clothes on I’m going to f—ing lose my temper.’ ”

Campbell started to look for a way out, but found the door where she had entered the suite was locked. A second door she thought could be her escape was also locked.

A third attempt resulted in a door that opened and let her out of the room.

“It took me days to calm down from the anger I felt and the crushing realisation that there never was a job; only a hidden hook,” she said. “When you consider the almost identical stories coming out about him now, it seems likely to me that he has been at it for more than 20 years.”


A spokesperson for Weinstein told The Sunday Times that “Mr. Weinstein will not respond to allegations about private matters in a public forum.” A lawyer for Weinstein did not immediately respond to a request for comment from PEOPLE.

When a person has the power to shape the norms and ethics of our society, to affect our assumptions about what constitutes acceptable behavior in our civil society, then no, it is not a private matter that they engage in assaultive behavior towards women.

-- Charles Carreon, Attorney at Law


On Thursday, The New York Times published an article in which eight women, including actress Ashley Judd, spoke out against Weinstein, accusing him of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior.

Weinstein responded to the allegations in the report, saying he was working with a therapist to address his issues head-on. “I appreciate the way I’ve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it,” he said. “Though I’m trying to do better, I know I have a long way to go.”

Weinstein’s then-attorney Lisa Bloom said in a statement that her client “denies many of the accusations as patently false,” though Weinstein said that he “bear[s] responsibility for my actions” in an interview to The New York Post on Friday. Another lawyer for Weinstein, Charles Harder, said the mogul has plans to sue the New York Times. (Bloom announced she was resigning from advising Weinstein on Saturday afternoon.)
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 10:09 pm

TV Journalist Says Harvey Weinstein Masturbated In Front Of Her: The new revelation, which allegedly took place a decade ago, comes after an explosive New York Times report said Weinstein had previously settled eight sexual harassment claims.
by Yashar Ali
October 6, 2017

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Harvey Weinstein once trapped a woman in the hallway of a restaurant that was closed to the public and masturbated in front of her until he ejaculated, she says. The accusation comes a day after Weinstein was the subject of a bombshell New York Times report that revealed that he has settled at least eight sexual harassment claims.

The incident took place a decade ago, according to Lauren Sivan, who at the time was a news anchor on a local cable channel in New York, Long Island 12. She says the experience left her shocked, and that while she told friends privately what happened, she remained quiet because she was in a long-term relationship and fearful of the power that Weinstein wielded in the media.

Sivan told HuffPost about the incident with Weinstein in an on-record interview. A list of detailed questions was emailed to a Weinstein Company publicist. While the publicist acknowledged receiving the questions, multiple attempts to get a response were unsuccessful. In a text message, Lisa Bloom, Weinstein’s attorney, said Weinstein was not available for an interview.

The night of the incident started with Sivan meeting Weinstein and others at Cipriani, a well-known Italian restaurant in Manhattan. She later rode with him and others to Socialista, a Cuban-themed club and restaurant in which Weinstein and Giuseppe Cipriani, who was then the head of the Cipriani restaurant empire, were investors. Sivan noted to HuffPost that Weinstein’s car was “stocked full of cases of Diet Coke,” which she said she found to be odd. In a 2001 profile of Weinstein in New York Magazine, journalist David Carr noted that while sitting at a table, Weinstein had “three Diet Cokes on standby in front of him.”

A spokeswoman for Cipriani confirmed that he and Weinstein have been friends for many years but declined to comment further.

HuffPost spoke to a friend of Sivan’s who was with her that night who corroborated details of Sivan’s story prior to and after the incident in the restaurant hallway, and shared additional details about that evening. Sivan’s friend spoke to HuffPost on the condition of anonymity because she wasn’t authorized by her employer to speak to members of the press about any topic.

Sivan recalled that, while at the club, Weinstein asked her to join him on a tour of its restaurant, Cafe Socialista. Sivan said she reluctantly agreed and they went downstairs to the restaurant. Just before Sivan left, the friend told her that if she wasn’t back in 10 minutes, she would come to check on her.

Once Sivan and Weinstein were downstairs they chatted and he showed her the cafe. He then took her to the kitchen (the restaurant was closed by that time), where a couple of staffers were cleaning up. The quiet in the kitchen struck Silvan as odd, but a story published in 2008 said that Cafe Socialista was closing down for a lack of business (while the club was to remain open), possibly explaining why the kitchen wasn’t as populated.

Weinstein then dismissed the two staffers in the kitchen.
According to multiple women who spoke to HuffPost on the condition of anonymity who said they had similar experiences with Weinstein, he has started out meetings or interactions with other people in the room and then dismissed them to be alone with women in order to make advances.

Once they left, Sivan says Weinstein leaned in and tried to kiss her. Sivan rejected that attempt and told him she had a long-term boyfriend. Weinstein then said to Sivan, “Well, can you just stand there and shut up.”

At this point, Weinstein and Sivan were in a vestibule between the kitchen and bathrooms. The only way for Sivan to get away from Weinstein required her to get past him and go through the kitchen. Sivan says she was trapped by Weinstein’s body and was intimidated.

Weinstein then proceeded to expose himself to Sivan and began to masturbate. Sivan said she was deeply shocked by Weinstein’s behavior and was frozen and didn’t know what to do or say. The incident in the vestibule didn’t last long. Sivan says Weinstein ejaculated quickly into a potted plant that was in the vestibule and then proceeded to zip up his pants and they walked back into the kitchen.

By the time this occurred, Sivan’s friend had grown concerned by how long Sivan was gone.

The friend began to go downstairs but was stopped by a security guard who told her she was not allowed. She says that she explained the 10-minute limit she gave to Sivan and said, “Do you mean to tell me if she’s in trouble down there, you’re not going to let me in?” The security guard agreed to let the friend down to the cafe.

Once she got downstairs, she met Sivan and Weinstein who were leaving the kitchen.


Sivan and her friend left just after the encounter, and both of them recalled Sivan discussing what had happened as soon as they left Socialista.

Sivan said Weinstein called her office the next day while she was at work. Sivan says Weinstein told her that he “had a great time last night.” Weinstein mentioned that he was going on a foreign trip and asked if Sivan wanted to get together when he got back. Sivan reminded him that she was in a relationship and says she quickly ended the call. She has not interacted with Weinstein since the incident in 2007.

The Weinstein Company announced Friday that Weinstein was going on an indefinite leave pending investigation of the sexual harassment claims by an independent law firm.

Follow Yashar — or send him a tip — on Twitter: @yashar
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 10:32 pm

Melissa Sagemiller Describes 3 Lewd Advances Made By Harvey Weinstein: The self-described “last tycoon” allegedly tried to coax the then-24-year-old into his hotel room and later stole her bags from an airport.
by Matthew Jacobs
Huffpost
10/13/2017 10:15 am ET Updated Oct 13, 2017

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Over two dozen women have come forward with accounts of Harvey Weinstein’s sexual misconduct, yielding a clearer sense of the abuse allegedly inflicted by the once-powerful movie producer.

Actress Melissa Sagemiller has now told HuffPost that she experienced Weinstein’s behavior firsthand in the summer of 2000, when she filmed “Get Over It.”

It was Sagemiller’s second movie, a contemporary teen comedy based on “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” following the thriller “Soul Survivors.” The production, in her own words, was “star-studded.” Her colleagues included Kirsten Dunst, Ben Foster, Sisqó, Zoe Saldana, Mila Kunis, Shane West, Colin Hanks, Martin Short, Ed Begley Jr., Swoosie Kurtz and Carmen Electra.

Miramax, the studio that Weinstein managed at the time, distributed the film, which meant Weinstein floated around the set throughout the two-month shoot. Sagemiller said that Weinstein, who was then married to his onetime assistant, made three separate advances toward her, all uninvited. The first incident allegedly occurred during a lunch meeting arranged by Weinstein’s assistant. At a later date, Sagemiller said he attempted to coax her into his hotel room, supposedly to “discuss the script.” She also described an episode after the movie wrapped, in which Weinstein ordered airport personnel to deliver her to his private plane, despite her protests and separately scheduled flight.

At the time, Sagemiller wasn’t completely silent about the ordeal, though she was encouraged not to formally speak out. (She suspects Weinstein left Dunst and Kunis alone because they were underage at the time.)

“I was definitely talking about it when we would go out with the cast because I was trying to warn the other girls, and I was trying to be tough about it and make a joke about it,” she said. “I will definitely say that the whole atmosphere with my agents there at the time, and with everyone in the business, including his producing partner, who was a woman, was like, ‘Don’t cause any trouble. Don’t say anything. You’re not going to be that girl because it will definitely hurt your career. This is Harvey. Harvey’s Harvey. Just don’t pay attention to him, ignore it, just move on.’ I was never told, ‘Are you OK? Do you want to say anything? Do you want to report this?’ Nothing like that. It was just, ‘That’s Harvey.’”

Weinstein’s licentious activity has been extensively covered over the past week. After The New York Times and The New Yorker published separate investigations into the years-long allegations lodged against the mogul, actresses like Cara Delevingne and Kate Beckinsale have told their own stories via social media.

Below is Sagemiller’s account of Weinstein’s behavior as it progressed throughout filming. She spoke to us by phone on Thursday; we have edited and condensed her quotes slightly to ensure clarity.

“I just think it’s so widespread,” the actress said. “It’s crazy. And it’s not just Harvey. It’s so many people in the industry. You start talking, and then another actress will go, ‘Oh yeah, I had that happen to me.’ I think this is a very important, interesting time.”

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JESSE GRANT VIA GETTY IMAGES

1. The lunch

At the time, I was 24. We were shooting in Toronto, and I think right after shooting started, I was called by one of his assistants — a woman, as always — saying, “Harvey wants to have lunch with you” [...] which I was actually even sort of excited about. I thought, “Oh, wow, the head of Miramax wants to take me to lunch ― great!” It was my second big film that I was doing. No one really warned me that much. They might have said, “Oh, he’s a little frisky,” but no one warned me the extent of what I was about to encounter.

So I go to lunch. I will say I was prepped in that I’d heard he likes his leading ladies — that’s sort of the extent. It obviously gives you a little something, like, “OK, I know what I’m walking into.”

The lunch was fine, although he was pretty inappropriate in terms of just being very flirty and asking me what I like to do and what kind of guys I like to date. It did become personal. Then he took me to a bookstore and proceeded to ask me, did I like literature? I was an English major at the University of Virginia. “Great, I’m going to buy you every Fitzgerald book in the bookstore, and I’m going to sign it to you, especially ‘The Last Tycoon’ because I am the last tycoon, and I’m actually about to produce the film, and it’s all about me, and you’re an English major — you’re so smart.”

I’m a city girl — I know how to handle myself. I’m tough. I was like, “OK, Harvey.” I gave him a lot of shit. I was always quick with a response, and I was quick to deflect because I figured out really quickly what kind of guy I thought he was.


2. The hotel room

The next incident that happened was further into the production. I was called by another assistant of his asking me to go to his hotel room. It’s like the Ashley Judd situation. He wanted to discuss the script. I was like, “I really don’t feel comfortable with this. Can we meet on the set tomorrow? In my trailer? Whatever. I just don’t really understand why I have to go to his room.” I was told, “It’s not going to be a long meeting.”

This is the horror of it all: You have another woman orchestrating this, knowing full well what is going to happen.

So then the assistant said, “The script has all these changes that he needs to discuss with you. It’s very important.” I remember talking to my boyfriend at the time on the phone, being like, “I can’t believe I have to do this. I don’t want to do this. I don’t have a good feeling about this, and I know what’s going to happen.” I was trying to be tough about it.

Anyway, I went to his room. Immediately he had drinks. The script was on the kitchen counter. He was in his robe. He’s like, “Would you give me a massage?” The whole thing. I said, “Harvey, I’m here to discuss the script. I’m not going to give you a massage or any of that.” And the banter went back and forth. He’s like, “I love you. You’re so fiery, you’re so smart. No one can give you shit, Sagemiller.” I’m like, “Exactly right.” But he just wouldn’t stop. I said, “I’m going to have to leave — we were supposed to discuss the script.” I just remember him saying, “Ah, I have to take a shower; I just went to the gym.” I don’t even know. It was so gross.

He said, “Well, you’re not going to leave until you kiss me.” I remember that’s when it turned from “Oh, ha ha, I can handle this guy” to “Well, OK, he’s blocking the door, sort of” — he’d walked over and put his hand on the door. It was just one of those things where I was like, “Really?” He just wouldn’t stop. It was relentless. And then he said, “Well, Renée did it and Charlize did it and this other actress did it. Don’t you want your career to be more than just this little teen film?” I said, “No, I’m not interested, thank you very much.” He said, “Well, you can’t leave until you kiss me.” He literally would not let me leave. I said fine and kissed him on the lips. He sort of held my head and made me kiss him, and then he’s like, “OK, you can go now. That’s all I wanted. Just do what I say and you can get your way.”

He finally opened the door so I could leave. I remember sitting in that elevator. He was so disgusting. He was taking Accutane at the time, and his skin was peeling all over this face. His lips were peeling. He was like Jabba the Hutt. He was like a lizard that was molting. It was so disgusting. […] I know that women have had much worse.


3. The airplane

Cut to the wrap party. He’d already gotten some other girl that he had given this small number of lines to and was apparently sleeping with, according to the rumor mill on the movie. So he started to leave me alone and not pursue me as much, until the wrap party comes around.

I had to come over and say, “Thank you for the movie.” He said, “Well, you’re coming back on my plane.” I said, “Harvey, I’m totally cool. I’ve got my own flight. Thank you so much for the offer, but I’m good. I’m good.” He’s like, “No, no, no, you’re taking my plane. It’s fine, I’ll arrange it. It’s all arranged. It’s arranged already.”

So then I ran out the door of the party and called my agent at the time. I said, “Do not take me off the flight I’m on. No matter who calls, do not cancel this flight that I have. It’s my separate flight from Toronto.”

The party ended and I went back to the hotel. I woke up and left the hotel an hour earlier than I was supposed to. My flight was at, like, 10 a.m., and I left the hotel at 7:30 a.m. That way, I wouldn’t see his assistant, I wouldn’t see Harvey, I wouldn’t see anyone.

I checked my bag, I went through security — this is pre-9/11, mind you — and I’m waiting to board at the gate of the flight when, all of a sudden, over the loudspeaker, I hear, “Melissa Sagemiller, please report to the security desk immediately. Melissa Sagemiller, please pick up the white phone at the security desk immediately.”

So I’m like, “Wait, what? Did someone have a heart attack?” You’re just thinking about all of these horrible scenarios. I run to the security desk down the hall, and it’s his assistant again. “Melissa? We’ve gotten your bags off the plane. The car is out front. Get in the car.” It was just so incredible. I started laughing. I said, “What are you talking about? You got my bags?” She’s like, “Yes, Harvey’s insistent. Please get in the car. Just please get in the car.”

They’d kidnapped my bags at this point, so I was just like, “Fine, you win, motherfucker.” So I left the airport, went out to the top level where the car was, got in the car. They raced me to the private-plane runway where there were other actors on the plane. Sisqó was on it, and Shane West was on it. Thank God. If I had walked in there and it was just him, I don’t know. I would have had to run away because that’s horrendous. I think I even asked at the time, “Are there other people on this plane? I’m not going alone.” [The assistant] said, “There are other actors on this plane.”

So I get on the plane, I walk up and I go, “Harvey, you motherfucker.” He’s just sitting there. He pats his hand on the seat next to him, and he’s like, “See, Melissa, you can’t say no to me. I always get what I want.” He wanted me on this plane, and he wanted me somewhere where I couldn’t go anywhere. And he just wanted to eff with me. He just wanted to fuck with my head. [...]

It was a short flight, from Toronto to New York. Shane and I were talking; we were friendly, and I stuck by him. I’m sure I had told him Harvey’s stories. [...]

I don’t think I’ve interacted with [Harvey] that much because none of the other movies I did were Miramax. […] And then I crossed over and did mostly television, so I didn’t have to see him. [...]


If my manager called me tomorrow and said, “Actually, I remember there was this movie you were up for, and now that I’m thinking back on it, maybe [rebuffing Weinstein is] why you didn’t get it,” I wouldn’t be surprised at all.

Representatives for Renée Zellweger and Charlize Theron did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s requests for comment.
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 11:16 pm

Weinstein Exposes the Hatred of Women in Hollywood
by Katrina Trinko
Newsweek
10/13/17 AT 11:19 AM

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This article first appeared on the Daily Signal.


The Deep Gender Divide in Hollywood -- Illustrated Screenplay
Produced by: Jordan Saville
Written by: Holly Snelling
[Transcribed from the video by Tara Carreon]


Five years ago at the Democratic National Convention, I went to a Planned Parenthood rally, where one speaker was TV actress Lisa Edelstein.

“Do not go to the polls alone,” she told us. “Drag somebody, if she’s a woman especially, because those women are going to vote for Obama—if they know what’s good for them.”

Edelstein is hardly the only Hollywood figure to make the case that liberal policies are crucial to women’s happiness and welfare. Yet, with the media still reeling from the revelations about powerful Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein’s behavior toward women, it’s time to examine both the people promoting that worldview—and the worldview itself.

The Edelstein episode stayed with me because, as an avid fan of “House,” I was especially devastated to see the actress who had played the tough, smart Dr. Lisa Cuddy promote the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood.

That organization is now fighting in Ohio against a law banning abortions done on the basis of gender. In other words, the oh-so-feminist Planned Parenthood is OK with the termination of pregnancy just because the child is a girl.

Yet Edelstein is far from alone in her support from Planned Parenthood. At the Academy Awards this year, actresses Emma Stone (who would win “Best Actress” that night) and Dakota Johnson both displayed Planned Parenthood pins. “I stand with Planned Parenthood because Planned Parenthood stands up for me,” said Scarlett Johansson in a 2015 video.

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Harvey Weinstein and Heidi Klum (back, eft) and actress Uma Thurman (front, left) attend a 2014 Golden Globes After Party at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 12, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California.
ARAYA DIAZ/GETTY


And the list of Planned Parenthood celebrity supporters goes on and on, including Kerry Washington, Nick Offerman, Alan Cumming, Ashley Judd, Mark Ruffalo, Chrissy Teigen, John Legend, Stanley Tucci, and Neil Patrick Harris, according to Newsbusters. Weinstein himself pledged $100,000 to Planned Parenthood in May, although the organization says he never delivered on the promise.

And that’s just Planned Parenthood. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama both racked up considerable celebrity endorsements in their presidential races, compared to virtually none for Donald Trump and Mitt Romney.

In a speech at the 2016 Democratic National Convention, actress Lena Dunham stressed how Clinton would help women, saying: “Do you want equal pay for equal work? The right to make decisions about your body? Paid family leave?”

So shouldn’t Hollywood be a liberal utopia?

Yet the revelations about Weinstein’s behavior suggest Hollywood is not, in fact, a good place to be a woman.


Writing for The New Yorker, Ronan Farrow—who was raised by Woody Allen, who continues to be tolerated by Hollywood after marrying his stepdaughter and being accused of child molestation by another daughter— spoke to 13 women who accused Weinstein of behavior ranging from sexual harassment to rape. Here are some of their accusations:

— “He forced me to perform oral sex on him … I said, over and over, ‘I don’t want to do this, stop, don’t,’” recounted Lucia Evans, at the time an aspiring actress. “He’s a big guy. He overpowered me.”

— Weinstein “lunged at her, groping her breasts and attempting to put a hand up her skirt while she protested,” wrote Farrow of beauty pageant contestant Ambra Battilana Gutierrez, recounting her report to the police after the incident.

— An unnamed woman who worked with the producer “said that Weinstein brought her to a hotel room under a professional pretext, changed into a bathrobe, and ‘forced himself on me sexually.’ She said no, repeatedly and clearly,” wrote Farrow.

And more and more stories have come out about Weinstein, with actresses such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie speaking out about his treatment of them.

Yet Weinstein is hardly a total outlier in Hollywood. After issuing a statement about Weinstein, actor Ben Affleck was accused of grabbing actress Hilarie Burton’s breast on MTV in 2003. He tweeted an apology.

Joss Whedon, the producer and writer behind TV shows including “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel” and writer-director of the blockbuster “Avengers” movies, came under fire from his ex-wife Kai Cole, who penned a damning essay about his affairs during their marriage in The Wrap this August. Cole wrote:


Despite understanding, on some level, that what he was doing was wrong, he never conceded the hypocrisy of being out in the world preaching feminist ideals, while at the same time, taking away my right to make choices for my life and my body based on the truth. He deceived me for 15 years, so he could have everything he wanted.

I believed, everyone believed, that he was one of the good guys, committed to fighting for women’s rights, committed to our marriage, and to the women he worked with. But I now see how he used his relationship with me as a shield, both during and after our marriage, so no one would question his relationships with other women or scrutinize his writing as anything other than feminist.

Whedon did respond to Cole’s essay with this statement to The Wrap: “While this account includes inaccuracies and misrepresentations which can be harmful to their family, Joss is not commenting, out of concern for his children and out of respect for his ex-wife.”

And let’s not forget Roman Polanski, who remains a Hollywood darling, despite his inability to come back to the United States—because he has refused to serve jail time for drugging and raping a 13-year-old girl in 1977.

Besides facing groping, assault, and rape, Hollywood women have the right to be upset about other matters, too. Despite being a land allegedly crammed with feminists, it’s common for female actresses to receive less pay than their male co-stars. And the number of female directors and producers remains small.

I’ll let The New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis take it from here:

Women helped build the industry, but it has long been a male-dominated enterprise that systematically treats women—as a class—as inferior to men.

It is an industry with a history of sexually exploiting younger female performers and stamping expiration dates on older ones. It is an industry that consistently denies female directors employment and contemptuously treats the female audience as a niche, a problem, an afterthought.


And let’s also not forget that Weinstein’s disgusting behavior seemed to be well known in Hollywood—yet no one, with a thought to future victims, blew the whistle.

In 2013, Seth MacFarlane made a pointed joke at the televised Academy Awards ceremony about Weinstein, telling Best Supporting Actress nominees, “Congratulations, you five ladies no longer have to pretend to be attracted to Harvey Weinstein.” Based on the nervous laughter of the audience, it appears there wasn’t confusion at the allusion—but it would be four more years before the story broke.

How is this supporting women?

It is easy to call Hollywood elites and liberal politicians hypocrites. It is frankly astonishing that Hillary Clinton, who tweeted in 2015 that “Every survivor of sexual assault deserves to be heard, believed, and supported” (a claim that did not seem to extend to her husband’s alleged victims), took five days to denounce Weinstein. As top White House aide Kellyanne Conway tweeted, Clinton isn’t always so slow to react.


Likewise, the Obamas took five days to issue a statement.

The common factor may have been the amount of money given to their campaigns, thanks to Weinstein. According to Politico, Weinstein’s efforts resulted in $1.4 million for Clinton’s 2016 campaign and $600,000 for Obama’s 2012 campaign. Not to be cynical, but: I think we have a motive for delay.

Now that Democrats and Hollywooders have realized there’s going to be no comeback for Weinstein, that there’s too many accusations of horrible things, they are quickly changing course.

Weinstein has been fired from his company. The Democratic National Committee, which has received $300,000 from Weinstein over the years, is donating $30,000 to charities including EMILY’s List, which seeks to elect pro-abortion female politicians.

Which brings me back to my point: Perhaps Weinstein isn’t a hypocrite, but rather the fulfillment of the real values that undergird Hollywood. Maybe the abortion obsession shared by Democrats and celebrities isn’t about giving women futures, but about giving men the guarantee to have consequence-free sex, even if the condom breaks or the birth control fails.

Sure, it’s often actresses, not actors, supporting Planned Parenthood—but if we’ve learned anything from the Weinstein saga, it’s that actresses often feel compelled or pressured to do certain things in order to have a successful career.

Again: Let’s look at Hollywood’s behavior, not what it says. It’s a place where young women are cherished and older women have to desperately fight for good roles. It’s a place where men get paid more, and where men more often are the leaders. It’s a place where somehow Weinstein was allowed to sexually harass and assault women for decades, and a place where a rapist like Polanski and a man who married his adopted daughter, like Allen, can remain lionized.

Sarah Palin isn’t controlling Hollywood. Nor is George W. Bush, or Donald Trump, or Michele Bachmann, or Mike Pence, or any other conservative figure the left slams. There’s no vast right-wing conspiracy here, no outside forces upsetting the liberal utopia that is Hollywood.

No, this is the world Hollywood has made for itself—and it’s a really ugly place, particularly if you’re a woman. Perhaps, as Whedon is accused of doing by his ex-wife, Hollywood men have just realized it’s easier to get away with bad behavior toward women if you say you embrace feminism.

It’s great that Weinstein is finally facing accountability. But it’s just not him who should; it’s the values of the entire system that kept him safe in a liberal cocoon for so long.

To steal Edelstein’s phrase, if women “know what’s good for them,” they should take a long, hard look at Hollywood’s liberal values—and see if they make a better world for women, or instead make it easier for men to act like out-of-control frat boys.


Katrina Trinko is managing editor of The Daily Signal and a member of USA Today's Board of Contributors.
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Re: 'Beautiful Girls' Scribe Scott Rosenberg On a Complicate

Postby admin » Wed Nov 01, 2017 11:51 pm

Six women accuse filmmaker Brett Ratner of sexual harassment or misconduct
by Amy Kaufman and Daniel Miller
Nov. 1, 2017

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Director Brett Ratner (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)

Natasha Henstridge was watching a movie on Brett Ratner’s couch when she fell asleep. She was a 19-year-old fashion model; he was an up-and-coming music video director in his early 20s. They had been hanging out in front of the TV with friends at his New York apartment.

But when Henstridge woke up, the others had left. She was alone with Ratner. She got up to leave, Henstridge said, but he blocked the doorway with his body and wouldn’t budge. He began touching himself, she said, then forced her to perform oral sex.

“He strong-armed me in a real way. He physically forced himself on me,” she said. “At some point, I gave in and he did his thing.”


Ratner, through his attorney Martin Singer, disputed her account.

Since that incident in the early 1990s, Henstridge has found success as an actress — starring in the films “Species” and “The Whole Nine Yards.” But she said she has carried the memory of the run-in with her, and watched from afar as Ratner became one of Hollywood’s most powerful players — directing, producing or financing dozens of today’s biggest box-office hits, including “Rush Hour,” “X-Men: The Last Stand,” “The Revenant” and “Horrible Bosses.”

As hundreds of women have come forward in recent weeks with allegations of sexual misconduct at the hands of producer Harvey Weinstein, director James Toback and numerous other powerful men, Henstridge decided she would no longer remain silent.

In interviews with the Los Angeles Times, Henstridge and five other women accused Ratner of a range of sexual harassment and misconduct that allegedly took place in private homes, on movie sets or at industry events.

As is often the case, none of the women reported the allegations to the police.


On Ratner’s behalf, Singer “categorically” disputed their accounts.

“I have represented Mr. Ratner for two decades, and no woman has ever made a claim against him for sexual misconduct or sexual harassment,” Singer said in a 10-page letter to The Times. “Furthermore, no woman has ever requested or received any financial settlement from my client.”

It feels as if I keep going up against the same bully at school who just won't quit.
-- Actress Olivia Munn


Olivia Munn said that while visiting the set of the 2004 Ratner-directed “After the Sunset” when she was still an aspiring actress, he masturbated in front of her in his trailer when she went to deliver a meal. Munn wrote about the incident in her 2010 collection of essays without naming Ratner. On a television show a year later, Ratner identified himself as the director, and claimed that he had “banged” her, something he later said was not true. The same year her book was published, Munn ran into Ratner at a party thrown by Creative Artists Agency and he boasted of ejaculating on magazine covers featuring her image, she told The Times.

She said that persistent false rumors that they had been intimate have infuriated her, prompting her to talk to The Times in support of other women who are “brave enough to speak up.”

“I've made specific, conscientious choices not to work with Brett Ratner,” Munn said.


“It feels as if I keep going up against the same bully at school who just won't quit,” she said. “You just hope that enough people believe the truth and for enough time to pass so that you can't be connected to him anymore.”

Ratner “vehemently disputes” Munn’s allegations, Singer said.

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Director Brett Ratner and producer Robert Evans stand for a photo at a Beverly Hills Oscars party in 2005. Stephen Shugerman / Getty Images

A playboy persona

Ratner, 48, has long flaunted his playboy persona, bragging publicly about his sexual prowess. He has been romantically linked to the likes of Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and Mariah Carey. In December, Tina Fey, speaking at the Hollywood Reporter’s annual Women in Entertainment breakfast, cracked: “Brett Ratner is here. In his defense, he thought this was a thing where you could eat breakfast off of 100 women.”

For years, he palled around with Robert Evans, the slick-haired former production chief at Paramount Pictures who was later convicted of trafficking cocaine, and Toback, who, as The Times reported last month, has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than 300 women. In a January interview with Variety, Ratner said Evans, Toback and Roman Polanski, who was convicted of having unlawful sex with a minor in 1977, were among his “closest friends.”


After Ratner quipped that “rehearsal is for fags” while appearing at a 2011 screening of his film “Tower Heist,” he was widely criticized. The misstep cost him a plum gig: He quickly resigned from producing the 2012 Academy Awards telecast and issued an apology, calling it a “dumb way of expressing myself.”

In interviews, Ratner has tried to smooth out the rough edges of his bad-boy image, especially more recently, as he has expanded his business ventures. In 2012, Ratner co-founded production company RatPac Entertainment. A year later, RatPac partnered with now-Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s Dune Entertainment to create the investment vehicle RatPac-Dune Entertainment, which inked a co-financing deal with Warner Bros. worth about $450 million. Among Ratner’s executive producing credits via those companies are “Jersey Boys” and “Black Mass.”

The filmmaker often has told reporters that he doesn’t use drugs or drink alcohol. Sometimes, in enumerating his lack of vices, Ratner also points out his love of beautiful women, saying, for example, in a 2008 Jewish Journal story: “I'm not into dark stuff. I'm just a nice Jewish kid ... who loves movies and pretty girls."

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Jaime Ray Newman in 2014. Andrew Goodman / Getty Images for the Maui Film Festival at Wailea

Actress Jaime Ray Newman said Ratner put it more bluntly to her, explaining in vulgar terms that he needed sex — not alcohol or drugs.

Newman said she encountered Ratner in 2005 when they were both in first class on an Air Canada flight.
The filmmaker swapped seats with his assistant before departure so he could be next to her, she said. Newman, who was on her way to shoot her first major acting role on the TV show “Supernatural,” was excited to talk with a “famous director” about to helm “X-Men: The Last Stand,” she said.

Within five minutes of the plane taking off, she said, Ratner began loudly describing sex acts he wanted to perform on her in explicit detail. He also showed her nude photos of his then-girlfriend, said Newman, 39, who stars on Netflix’s forthcoming “The Punisher.”

“He was graphically describing giving me oral sex and how he was addicted to it,” she said.


Newman said she was so shaken by the encounter that she immediately told a handful of people about it. Both her mother and a friend confirmed to The Times that the actress shared details shortly after the flight.

Ratner, through his attorney, denied that the incident occurred, referring to it as a “ridiculous claim.”

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Actress Katharine Towne in February 2008. Charley Gallay / Getty Images for MediaPlacement

Actress Katharine Towne also described an aggressive come-on by Ratner that left her so uncomfortable that she said she still vividly remembers the incident years later. She said she met the director in L.A. around 2005 at a party in a movie star’s home, where he made unwanted advances. Ratner, she said, was persistent, “making it evident that he had one motive” — to sleep with her.

“He started to come on to me in a way that was so extreme,” said Towne, 39, whose credits include the film “What Lies Beneath.” The actress, who is the daughter of “Chinatown” screenwriter Robert Towne, excused herself. Ratner followed her into a bathroom.

“I think it’s pretty aggressive to go in the bathroom with someone you don’t know and close the door,” Towne said.

She said she was nervous, and tried to make a joke about her weight: “I don’t even know what you want with me. I’m kind of chubby right now.” He was undeterred. “I like ’em chubby sometimes,” she said Ratner replied. Towne gave Ratner her number, hoping to placate him. Ratner’s assistant called her for the next six months, unsuccessfully trying to arrange a dinner for her and the filmmaker, she said.

Ratner’s attorney Singer called Towne’s account “absurd.” “Even if hypothetically this incident occurred exactly as claimed, how is flirting at a party, complimenting a woman on her appearance, and calling her to ask her for a date wrongful conduct?” Singer said.


Although some have questioned his conduct, Ratner has defenders in the industry including five former assistants who have worked closely with him throughout the years. David Steiman, Hopi Dobuler, Drew Sherman, Brett Gursky and Izak Rappaport all said that they did not witness him misbehave and praised him as a boss and mentor.

Steiman, who was Ratner’s assistant from 1999 to 2004, said he never saw him mistreat women, and would be "shocked" if such conduct occurred. Steiman noted that Ratner dated actress Rebecca Gayheart and tennis star Serena Williams during his time working for the filmmaker.

Said Dobuler, a longtime former assistant to Ratner: “I think he’s great. ... He’s a family guy.”

Over the years, Ratner has received several honors for his philanthropic and humanitarian endeavors. On Sunday, the Jewish National Fund presented Ratner with its annual Tree of Life Award at a gala in Hollywood where the guests included film producer Avi Lerner, United Talent Agency co-founder Jim Berkus and Singer.

Gal Gadot, the Israeli star of “Wonder Woman,” had been slated to give the award to Ratner, but as The Times was reporting on his alleged sexual misbehavior last week, the actress’ publicist announced she would not appear at the event because of a scheduling conflict.

Instead, "Wonder Woman" director Patty Jenkins, who has known Ratner for years, presented him the award, saying: "He’s gone on to be this real power in this town. He’s a big character. He’s a big personality. But you know what I love about Brett, he wants that for everybody else too."

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Actress Olivia Munn arrives at the 2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party in February. Axelle/Bauer-Griffin / FilmMagic

Munn’s Ratner run-ins

New to Los Angeles and pursuing an acting career, Munn said she was thrilled when a friend invited her to the set of "After the Sunset.” "I was so excited, because I mean, that's why you come out to California and Hollywood," recalled the actress, 37, whose credits now include HBO's "The Newsroom" and the movies "Magic Mike” and "X-Men: Apocalypse."

Not long after Munn arrived on the Santa Monica set in 2004, she said, she was asked to drop some food off in Ratner's trailer as a favor. She said she was assured that the director would not be there.

Munn entered Ratner’s trailer and quickly placed the food on a table. She said she was startled to find him inside. She tried to make a quick exit, but Ratner implored her not to leave.

"He walked out ... with his belly sticking out, no pants on, shrimp cocktail in one hand and he was furiously masturbating in the other," Munn said. "And before I literally could even figure out where to escape or where to look, he ejaculated."

Munn said she let out a "startled scream" and raced out of the trailer. She said she immediately told the man who had asked her to deliver the food. His reaction? “It wasn't a shock. It wasn't surprise,” Munn recalled. “It was just, ‘Ugh, sorry about that.’"

Munn said she left the set and called her sister, Sara Potts, who urged her to speak with a lawyer. Potts confirmed Munn’s account.

The attorney dissuaded her from going up against a powerful director as a fledgling actress, so she did nothing.

“That did leave an impact on me,” Munn said, reflecting on the conversation. "How broken do women have to be before people listen?"


She wrote about the incident in her book, “Suck It, Wonder Woman! The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek” — but stripped out names and details. During a 2011 appearance on “Attack of the Show,” a television program Munn previously co-hosted, Ratner identified himself as the unnamed director, but denied masturbating in front of her. “I used to date Olivia Munn, I will be honest with everybody here,” he said. “When she was ‘Lisa.’ That was the problem. She wasn’t Asian back then.”

“I banged her a few times ... but I forgot her,” he said.

Days later, he went on the Howard Stern show and admitted he never slept with Munn and expressed contrition for making her look like “a whore.”

“I felt horrible,” he told the Sirius XM Radio host. “I said I banged her three times, which wasn’t true.”


In response to questions from The Times, Singer said that Munn and Ratner had indeed had “an intimate relationship.” Munn described that as “a complete lie.”

“I shouldn’t have to be completely broken, battered, and devalued in order to prove that he crossed a line,” she said.


I shouldn’t have to be completely broken, battered, and devalued in order to prove that he crossed a line.
Olivia Munn


Munn said she continued to run into Ratner at a handful of Hollywood events.

In 2010, after recently appearing on the cover of a magazine, she attended a CAA-hosted party where, she said, Ratner asked her, "Why do you hate me?" She said she told him: "It's more of a dislike."

Ratner grew angry, she said, and responded: “Why? I bought 10 of your magazines and came over all of them.”

Singer said Ratner “has no recollection of making such a statement.”


Immediately after the run-in, Munn told her friend Cara McConnell, whom she had brought to the party, about what transpired.

“She came up to me right afterwards,” McConnell said. “She [said] ‘I can’t believe this happened to me. I can’t believe he did that.’”

An actor who overheard the conversation confirmed Munn’s account. A third partygoer confirmed being told immediately about the “vulgar” encounter from someone who overheard it directly.

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Director Brett Ratner on the set of "Rush Hour 2" circa 2001. Michael Ochs Archives / Getty Images

On the set of ‘Rush Hour 2’

The claimed incident with Munn is not the only one to allegedly occur on set of a Ratner-helmed film.

Four people who were involved in the production of Ratner’s “Rush Hour 2” in Las Vegas in 2001 described a sexually charged atmosphere — one in which the director was pursuing women. The PG-13 film includes several scenes featuring women in bikinis and lingerie, and the set, according to these people, was teeming with beautiful young women.

Eri Sasaki, then a 21-year-old part-time model and aspiring singer, said her role as an extra required her to wear a skimpy outfit that exposed her midriff. While waiting for filming to begin one day, Ratner approached her, ran his index finger down her bare stomach and asked if she wanted to go into a bathroom with him. When she said no, she recalled Ratner saying, "Don't you want to be famous?"

A day or two later, Ratner again asked her to go into the bathroom with him, and again asked if she wanted to be a movie star. He offered to give her a line of dialogue in the film. Sasaki said no.

Singer said Ratner has no recollection of the alleged incident.

Jorina King also worked as a background actress on the film.

On the first day of shooting, King said, Ratner plucked her from a crowd of female extras and said he later wanted to discuss giving her a speaking part.

The next day, he asked her to come to his trailer and told her he needed to see her breasts, she said. King said she rejected his request and hid in a restroom. “I figured if I could stay out of his eyesight, if I could stay away from him, he will forget about me and he will choose someone else, and that is exactly what happened,” King said, adding that she feared him — and losing the work.


Kent Richards, who was a production assistant on the set of “Rush Hour 2,” said that Sasaki told him, during the production, about her experience with Ratner. He also said he recalled a conversation in which King expressed being uncomfortable on set, and referenced Ratner. Richards also said two or three other background actresses complained to him, alleging that Ratner asked them to show him their breasts or to touch his penis. Singer disputed Richards’ account, calling it a “secondhand story about unnamed individuals.”

David Anthony, whose company at the time, Background Players, handled extras casting for the film’s shoot in L.A. and Las Vegas, said that three background actresses who worked on the project told him that Ratner had asked them out on “dates.”


“In Brett’s defense, I am sure he is not the only heterosexual man hitting on women on that set,” he said.

King, who later founded the background casting agency Wild Streak Talent, said that she’d dealt with brusque men on movie sets, but nothing like Ratner.

“He feels entitled, that this is what he wants, this is how it is going to be, and this feels like normal business to him,” she said.

Singer called King’s claims “absurd” and “nonsensical.” “The movie was obviously already cast and shooting, so the notion that there would be a discussion of getting her a speaking role in the middle of a movie shoot is ridiculous,” Singer said.

He provided a statement by James M. Freitag, an assistant director on the set, who said that he received no such complaints during “Rush Hour 2” filming.

“Any complaints of any kind including sexual harassment would be immediately directed to my attention,” Freitag said. “There were no complaints reported to me whatsoever.”

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Natasha Henstridge in August 2015. Michael Tran / FilmMagic

Seeing Ratner again

Since their encounter in New York in the 1990s, Henstridge, 43, has crossed paths with Ratner numerous times in Hollywood, including once during the last ten years at a party with her friend Amy Del Rio.

"She saw someone in the crowd and her body language changed," said Del Rio, an entertainment lawyer. "I asked her if she was OK and she said 'no.' Then I saw she was looking at Brett Ratner. I asked if she knew him. She said, 'He's not a good guy. I knew him back in the day in New York.' She was really weird, like, 'I wanna get out of here.'"


Henstridge detailed the alleged encounter with Ratner to Del Rio only within the last month. But three other people — a former boyfriend, a neighbor and a close friend — confirmed to The Times that Henstridge told them about the incident over a roughly 10-year period beginning in the mid-1990s.

Although he acknowledged spending time with her, Ratner disputed Henstridge’s claims. Singer accused the actress of being “upset after learning my client had a girlfriend who he would not leave” for her.

Henstridge told The Times that she was not interested in dating Ratner and, before that night, had never been alone with him.

Henstridge’s neighbor Lilith Berdischewsky said that the actress told her about the incident with Ratner in the mid-2000s. “I remember when she was going to some audition and she says, ‘I don’t know whether I should go or not, but [Ratner] probably is not going to be there.’ And she came back and she was shaking,” Berdischewsky recalled.

Indeed, Henstridge, who recently appeared on the television shows “Medinah” and “Beauty & the Beast,” went to an audition for the TV drama "Prison Break," which Ratner executive produced, knowing he might be in the room.

"And he was," said the actress, who has two sons, ages 16 and 19. "I had two young kids and had to go to work and make a living. And he just acted like we were old friends from back in the day in New York, saying, 'I haven't seen you in years.' Auditioning is already bad enough. But trying to focus on the work, I just felt sick."

She didn’t get the part.

amy.kaufman@latimes.com
@AmyKinLA
daniel.miller@latimes.com
@danielnmiller
Times staff writers Victoria Kim, Andrew Khouri and Glenn Whipp contributed to this report.
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