Vampire Diaries Actress Wonders If Rebuffing Harvey Weinstein's Alleged Advances Hurt Her Career
Vampire Diaries actress Alice Evans penned an emotional essay on Saturday in which she opened up about about rejecting disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein’s sexual advances and pondered the professional consequences that had on both her career and the career of her actor husband Ioan Gruffudd.
In the piece written for The Telegraph, Evans, 46, said her encounter with Weinstein happened at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival where he approached her with a drink and complimented a recent audition Gruffudd had done for one of his projects.
Though Evans had heard rumors about Weinstein’s alleged bad behavior, she was concerned about making a good impression considering his then-power in the industry. “This is my moment to impress Harvey Weinstein,” she recalled thinking. “If I’m boring he’ll walk away and I may never get a second chance.”
“Oddly, despite having heard endless stories about massages and hand-jobs in hotel rooms, it doesn’t even cross my mind-not for a second-that he might try the same on me,” she added.
Weinstein did make a move though, Evans claimed.
“Suddenly, out of nowhere, he’s asking me to go into the hotel bathroom with him,” Evans wrote, explaining that she tried to make a joke to dismiss Weinstein but he wouldn’t be stopped.
“‘Just go. I’m right behind you. I want to touch your tits. Kiss you a little,’ ” Evans claimed Weinstein said.
When she pushed off his advances, Weinstein allegedly left her with an ominous statement: “Let’s hope it all works out for your boyfriend.”
Evans said she told story to a former member of Gruffudd’s management team about her encounter with Weinstein at a meeting the next day. He had bad news for Evans. “‘I was worried you might say that,’ ” he said. “‘They called this morning. It’s not going Ioan’s way.’ ”
A year after the incident, Evans said she auditioned for a Weinstein project and was told by a female producer that he would personally need to sign-off on the lead roles. She didn’t get the part. And looking back on it, Evans wondered what might have been had she just succumbed to Weinstein’s alleged advances.
“I was never again considered for a Weinstein film, and neither was Ioan,” Evans said of the audition. “I’ll never know if my refusal to be sexually available for Mr Weinstein at the moment he fancied his little fix had me blacklisted, or whether I’m inflating my own importance in a much bigger picture.”
No matter what, she said her experience with Weinstein changed her.
“This total lack of concern for me as a woman – and more importantly a human being – shocked me to the core and affected me for years,” Evans wrote. …”He propositioned me, overtly, repeatedly, then he turned nasty when I said no… That’s not illegal. And yet I can’t help feeling I’m the one who has behaved badly here – and that somehow I will be made to pay.”
Weinstein’s rep did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Weinstein’s scandal began when eight women including Ashley Judd spoke out against him in a bombshell New York Times report published Oct. 5., where they accused the mogul of sexual misconduct. The paper also reported that Weinstein reached private settlements with eight women, including actress Rose McGowan.
Following the initial report, Weinstein said in a statement that he was working with therapists and planned to “deal with this issue head-on.” He has since been fired from his powerhouse studio, the Weinstein Company, and his wife, Marchesa designer Georgina Chapman, has announced she’s leaving him.
“My heart breaks for all the women who have suffered tremendous pain because of these unforgivable actions. I have chosen to leave my husband. Caring for my young children is my first priority and I ask the media for privacy at this time,” Chapman said in a statement to PEOPLE.
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On Tuesday, Paltrow and Angelina Jolie added their own accounts of alleged mistreatment —Paltrow alleging to the Times that Weinstein sexually harassed her in a hotel room when she was 22 and Jolie claiming to the outlet that she had a “bad experience” with Weinstein in a hotel room during the release of Playing by Heart in the late ’90s.
Also that day, The New Yorker revealed — among 13 different women’s accounts of alleged sexual harassment, assault or rape — that the mogul allegedly forcibly performed oral sex on Italian actress Asia Argento two decades ago. Actresses Mira Sorvino and Rosanna Arquette also claimed that after rejecting Weinstein’s unwanted advances, they were removed from or kept from being hired for projects.
In response to the lengthy allegations made against Weinstein in the New Yorker piece, a spokesperson for Weinstein said, “Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein.”
Also on Saturday, the Washington Post published a lengthy deep-dive into Weinstein’s career and unearthed several more stories of alleged abuse and misconduct.
Weinstein spoke to cameras on Wednesday while leaving his daughter’s Los Angeles house, saying he was “not doing okay” and hoping for a “second chance” amid the allegations.
A source confirmed to PEOPLE that the 65-year-old had flown out of Los Angeles to a luxury resort.