Patricia Arquette, Lena Dunham, Amber Tamblyn and more prominent figures in the entertainment industry are speaking out against Harvey Weinstein in wake of a New York Times story alleging that the movie mogul has sexually harassed women for decades.
The powerhouse film executive has been accused of multiple incidents of sexual harassment — including by actresses Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan — spanning three decades. According to the New York Times, Weinstein has reached at least eight settlements with women, including McGowan.
Weinstein announced Thursday that he is taking a leave of absence from his studio, The Weinstein Company. Weinstein’s attorney, Lisa Bloom, said in a statement that “he denies many of the accusations as patently false.” Another attorney for Weinstein, Charles Harder, said the mogul is preparing a lawsuit against the NYT for “false and defamatory” statements.
The executive quickly became the top trending topic on Twitter, with many industry figures applauding the alleged victims for speaking out. Oscar winner Patricia Arquette specifically thanked McGowan and Judd for coming forward.
McGowan herself also took to Twitter to lend her support to the other women who spoke out and call for people to stop working with the mogul.
After news broke on Wednesday that a story on Weinstein was coming, the actress made several remarks on Twitter — including a reference to making the story into a movie after Weinstein dismissed the allegations to The Hollywood Reporter, saying “That story sounds so good I want to buy the movie rights.”
Actress Amber Tamblyn, who recently penned several open letters about sexual harassment towards young girls by older men, also tweeted in response.
Jessica Chastain responded to the news Thursday, tweeting: “Its never easy to be the first to go on record #Respect.”
Along with Tamblyn and Chastain were Lena Dunham and popular author Roxanne Gay, who divulged that “there are guys like Harvey Weinstein in publishing.”
Entertainment journalists and insiders also weighed in.
Weinstein co-founded Miramax with his brother Bob in the 1970s. The studio became a prominent player in independent cinema with films including Pulp Fiction and Steven Soderbergh’s Sex, Lies, and Videotape.
After Miramax was acquired by Disney in 2005, Weinstein and his brother went on to found the Weinstein Company. The Hollywood power player is known for his strong Academy Awards campaigns.
The Weinstein Company’s films include Oscar winners and critically acclaimed hits such as The Artist, The King’s Speech, Silver Linings Playbook, Django Unchained and more.
Weinstein is married to fashion designer Georgina Chapman, with whom he has two children.