Actress Ashley Judd said she rebuffed Harvey Weinstein’s unwanted sexual advances by offering to consent only after she had won an Oscar.
Dozens of women have come forward to say the producer sexually harassed or assaulted them, claims Mr Weinstein has dismissed as false. Ms Judd was among the most prominent of the early wave of accusers, and she offered more details during an interview with ABC News.
Speaking with tears in her eyes, Ms Judd said it has “been an absolutely tremendously moving two and a half or three weeks” as a growing cascade of women have told their stories.
When she was initially invited to a meeting with Mr Weinstein, Ms Judd said, she was surprised to learn the producer was in his hotel room – a tactic that recurs in other womens’ accounts.
“That’s his pattern of sexual predation”, Ms Judd said. “That was how he rolled”.
Echoing the accounts of other women, Ms Judd said Mr Weinstein suggested she give him a massage and then invited her to watch him shower. She said she responded to his entreaties with a “volley of no’s” and refused to sit down. Finally, she said, she offered him a compromise: “when I win an Oscar in one of your movies”.
“He was like ‘yeah, when you get nominated’”, Ms Judd said, “and I said ‘no. when I win an Oscar’. And then I just fled”.
If she had come forward at the time, Ms Judd said, “I don’t know that I would be believed”.
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“Who was I to to tell? I knew it was disgusting. Like, was I going to tell the concierge who sent me up to the room?” Ms Judd said.
After the New York Times and the New Yorker published accounts of numerous women saying Mr Weinstein made unsolicited advances, prompting even more alleged victims to come forward, the powerful producer’s fall was swift. The Weinstein Company quickly severed ties, disavowing any knowledge of its founder’s conduct.