Weinstein’s alma mater joins long line of institutions and Hollywood personalities to turn its back on the disgraced Hollywood producer.
Harvey Weinstein’s fall from grace hit a new low, with his alma mater - the University of Buffalo (UB) - moving to rescind the honorary doctorate of humane letters it bestowed on him in 2000.
In its statement confirming the proceedings, UB made a point of declaring that "Weinstein personally never made a gift to the university", but Miramax (co-founded by Weinstein), which is owned by Disney, donated $22,750 "to support a media study scholarship at the university" in the early 2000s.
UB is just the latest in a long line of institutions and personalities to turn their backs on the disgraced Hollywood producer, whose credits include Pulp Fiction, Good Will Hunting and The English Patient.
My heart breaks for all the women who have suffered tremendous pain because of these unforgivable actions.
An explosive 10-month investigation from The New Yorker’s Ronan Farrow, published on October 10, includes accounts from 13 women claiming to have been sexually harassed or assaulted by the movie mogul.
This followed, and corroborated, the New York Times expose on October 5, which exposed eight settlements between Weinstein and women he had wronged.
The Weinstein Company
Weinstein was axed from the company he co-founded on Sunday. The statement announcing his sacking as co-chairman of The Weinstein Company confirmed the New York Times piece was the driving force behind the board’s decision — “in light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days”, it read.
Just prior to the announcement it emerged that Weinstein had sent a desperate last-minute email to power brokers asking for a vote of confidence he could give to his board.
“My board is thinking of firing me,” Weinstein wrote in the email to several film executives, which was obtained by the Hollywood Reporter. “All I’m asking is let me take a leave of absence and get into heavy therapy and counseling. Whether it be in a facility or somewhere else, allow me to resurrect myself with a second chance. A lot of the allegations are false as you know, but given therapy and counseling as other people have done, I think I’d be able to get there.”
It has also been reported that the company name is set to change, while Project Runway was the first TV program to erase Weinstein from the credits as executive producer.
Weinstein’s wife of the last 10 years, Georgina Chapman, announced on Tuesday that the pair were separating.
In a statement to People, she said: “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.”
Gwyneth Paltrow, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Gwyneth Paltrow has joined Angelia Jolie and a throng of other actresses, models and employees to reveal an experience of Weinstein’s unwanted advances.
She told of how, as a 22-year-old, she was summoned to his suite for a work meeting only for it to end with Mr. Weinstein placing his hands on her and suggesting they head to the bedroom for massages.
“I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” she was quoted as saying.
Her then boyfriend Brad Pitt allegedly confronted Weinstein, which led to the executive warning her to keep quiet.
Jolie, in a statement to the New York Times, said: "I had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein in my youth, and as a result, chose never to work with him again and warn others when they did... This behaviour towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable."
Women fight on. And to the men out there, stand up. We need you as allies. #bebrave
— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan) October 5, 2017
This follows former Charmed actress Rose McGowan’s call to arms via Twitter. McGowan reached a $100,000 settlement with Weinstein after an episode in a hotel room during the Sundance Film Festival in 1997, according to the Times report on Thursday.
It has been reported that Weinstein contributed $US3000 to former President Bill Clinton’s re-election campaign in 2000, more than $US26,000 to campaigns or political action committees (PACs) backing 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton since 2000, and more than $US45,000 to campaigns or PACs backing former President Barack Obama in his two bids for the presidency.
Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have both condemned him since.
"I was shocked and appalled by the revelations about Harvey Weinstein," Clinton said in a statement through her spokesman Nick Merrill. "The behaviour described by women coming forward cannot be tolerated. Their courage and the support of others is critical in helping to stop this kind of behaviour."
Obama was even more scathing in his statement, saying: "Michelle and I have been disgusted by the recent reports about Harvey Weinstein... Any man who demeans and degrades women in such fashion needs to be condemned and held accountable, regardless of wealth or status."
Any man who demeans and degrades women in such fashion needs to be condemned and held accountable, regardless of wealth or status
In response to the New York Times expose, Weinstein made this statement:
"I came of age in the '60s and '70s when all the rules about behaviour and workplaces were different. That was the culture then. I have since learned it's not an excuse, in the office — or out of it. To anyone. I realised some time ago that I needed to be a better person and my interactions with the people I work with have changed."
However, in light of the allegations that surfaced in The New Yorker investigation, he has released a new statement that says he believes all of his sexual encounters were consensual, but he is still undergoing counselling.
Mr. Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual
“Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein,” Weinstein’s spokesperson Sallie Hofmeister said in a statement to Us Weekly.
“Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances. Mr. Weinstein obviously can’t speak to anonymous allegations, but with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, Mr. Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual. Mr. Weinstein has begun counselling, has listened to the community and is pursuing a better path. Mr. Weinstein is hoping that, if he makes enough progress, he will be given a second chance.”