Harvey Weinstein was once jokingly called “God” by actress Meryl Streep. But in Hollywood even a god can be brought down. Intense pressure from growing, salacious accusations of sexual harassment by Weinstein forced The Weinstein Company to fire him effective immediately.
A statement by the board of directors of The Weinstein Company reads:
“In light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days, the directors of The Weinstein Company… have determined, and have informed Harvey Weinstein, that his employment with The Weinstein Company is terminated, effective immediately.”
CGTN’s May Lee reports.
Weinstein’s downfall came swiftly following a damning report by the New York Times last week that detailed three decades of sexual misconduct against actresses and employees.
It’s a stunning turn of events for a man who’s credited for producing some of Hollywood’s most memorable films – first with Miramax, a studio he co-founded with his brother Bob, and then The Weinstein Company. In all, Weinstein is responsible for garnering more than 300 Oscar nominations.
“I don’t know that at this point in time there’s any way he comes back to the movie business because Hollywood is a very collaborative place and this story…a story like this has a way of making everybody dirty so you probably don’t want to be involved with someone like him at least now and we’ll see what strides he can make in his own rehabilitation but for now I think he’s pretty much done,” Matt Donnelly, senior Writer at “The Wrap” said.
Hollywood’s reaction to Weinstein’s demise was swift. Tweets from both women and men supported his firing. Meryl Streep released a statement calling Weinstein’s alleged actions “disgraceful,” “inexcusable” and “an abuse of power.”
But the bigger question: is this the beginning of the end of Hollywood’s open secret of the casting couch?
“There’s always been this kind of presumption well, of course that happens,” Dana Harris, editor-in-chief of Indie Wire said. “It’s almost like precedent creates rationalization. And now it’s a feeling of yes it has always happened and it has to stop. It no longer can be shrugged off. It no longer can be looked at as the cost of doing business.”
As for the fate of The Weinstein Company, it’s too early to tell what kind of impact this will have. There are currently a few Weinstein company films that are getting some Oscar buzz, but nominations don’t come out for a few more months. In the meantime, there’s one big change that will likely be coming soon. Due to the now-tainted Weinstein name, the company will reportedly rebrand itself and drop the Weinstein name all together.