Filmmaker Michael Moore, TV mogul Oprah Winfrey and ‘Project Runway’ host Heidi Klum are the latest Hollywood personalities to have spoken out against disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein, who is facing multiple allegations of sexual abuse. Moore said the investigations into Weinstein’s “repugnant and abhorrent behavior” could “actually ignite a historic change in our society”.
In a Facebook post titled ‘Use This Moment to Create a World Without Harveys’, the documentary filmmaker said this moment should be used to work towards ending women’s harassment in the industry. “Anyone with a flicker of a conscience or a modicum of decency stands, as I do, with the women who’ve summoned the courage to tell the truth about Harvey Weinstein. But well meaning platitudes of support for the abused are simply not enough,” Moore wrote.
“Let’s use this moment to end the abuse of women in our industry. Let’s make this a call for men to take a stand against the men who perpetrate this corrosive, criminal behavior, to call them out and shut them down. We can do this. All it takes is the will and the decision to say ‘enough is enough!” he wrote.
Klum, whose show “Project Runway” has removed Weinstein as its executive producer, also addressed the scandal. “I wish I could say that the horrible stories I read about Harvey Weinstein are a rare occurrence in our society, but that is simply not the case. We would be naive to think that this behavior only happens in Hollywood,” Klum, 44, told People magazine. She said Weinstein was just one example of the “more pervasive problem of the mistreatment of women around the world”.
“I think it would be hard to find a woman – myself included – who have not had an experience where they have felt intimidated or threatened by a man using his power, position or his physical stature,” she said, adding the change will come only when people are held accountable. Winfrey called Weinstein’s behaviour “hideous”. “I’ve been processing the accounts of Harvey Weinstein’s hideous behavior and haven’t been able to find the words to articulate the magnitude of the situation,” the media mogul wrote on Facebook. “… Thanks to the brave voices we’ve heard this week, many more will now be emboldened to come forward EVERY time this happens. I believe a shift is coming,” she added.
Weinstein, once one of the most powerful men in Hollywood, had a swift fall after eight women — including actress Ashley Judd — spoke out against him in a New York Times report, accusing him of sexual harassment and
inappropriate behavior. The NYT article was followed by a more detailed piece by Ronan Farrow in The New Yorker where three women accused the producer of rape, which Weinstein has denied.
Many more powerful women from Hollywood including names such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Heather Graham, Eva Green and Lea Seydoux have come forward with stories of harassment by the producer. Weinstein has since been fired from The Weinstein Company, and his wife, Georgina Chapman, has announced that she is leaving him.