NOTE: This article contains disturbing and sexually explicit language. Please read at your own discretion.
She writes that Weinstein was omnipresent in her acting career from the start, and says it took her so long to speak out because she didn’t realize how important her voice would be in the current conversation. Over 100 women have come out with stories alleging Weinstein sexually harassed or assaulted them over the past several decades, and in some cases the purported victims have filed lawsuits against him, Miramax and The Weinstein Company.
Weinstein, through a representative, has denied all accusations of non-consensual sex.
Much of Hayek’s early relationship with Weinstein began while she was helping produce her passion project, 2002 movie Frida. The film, about Mexican painter Frida Kahlo de Rivera, was very special to Hayek, and she had spent years developing and researching it.
When Weinstein agreed to work with her on the movie and help produce, Hayek was overjoyed — at least initially.
“He had said yes. Little did I know it would become my turn to say no,” she wrote, before listing off multiple demands that Weinstein allegedly made of her over the course of their relationship.
“No to opening the door to him at all hours of the night, hotel after hotel, location after location, where he would show up unexpectedly, including one location where I was doing a movie he wasn’t even involved with.
No to me taking a shower with him.
No to letting him watch me take a shower.
No to letting him give me a massage.
No to letting a naked friend of his give me a massage.
No to letting him give me oral sex.
No to my getting naked with another woman.
No, no, no, no, no…
And with every refusal came Harvey’s Machiavellian rage.”
Hayek wrote that she eventually caved to one of Weinstein’s demands — shooting a nude sex scene with another woman for Frida — but she claims she only did it so Weinstein wouldn’t kill her project altogether. (From the start, Weinstein allegedly disparaged the movie, Hayek and Frida herself, saying no one in the mainstream audience would ever pay to see it. It went on to be a box-office success, and brought Weinstein two additional Oscars.)
On the day of the shoot for that scene, Hayek was physically and emotionally shaken to the point where she had to take a tranquilizer. She even vomited. Her reaction, she explained, wasn’t due to the scene’s subject matter, but more that she was doing it to placate Weinstein.
“It was not because I would be naked with another woman. It was because I would be naked with her for Harvey Weinstein. But I could not tell them then,” she wrote.
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“I said no, a lot of ways, a lot of times, and he always came back at me with some new ask,” Judd said about Weinstein. “It was all this bargaining, this coercive bargaining.”
Hayek concludes her piece by calling for more gender parity in Hollywood, and cites some damning numbers; she says that between 2007 and 2016, only four per cent of directors were female and 80 per cent of those women only made one film. Until women get power when it comes to filmmaking and production, the imbalance will continue to exist.
“Until there is equality in our industry, with men and women having the same value in every aspect of it, our community will continue to be a fertile ground for predators,” she wrote. “I am grateful for everyone who is listening to our experiences. I hope that adding my voice to the chorus of those who are finally speaking out will shed light on why it is so difficult, and why so many of us have waited so long. Men sexually harassed because they could. Women are talking today because, in this new era, we finally can.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse or is involved in an abusive situation, please visit the Canadian Resource Centre for Victims of Crime for help. They are also reachable toll-free at 1-877-232-2610.
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