Briefs

Harvey Weinstein sexual assault charges: Police in London and New York open investigations

The US movie producer has been accused of sexually harassing and raping several female associates and actors.

Allegations of sexual assault against US movie producer Harvey Weinstein are being investigated by the New York Police Department and the London’s Metropolitan Police, Variety reported on Thursday. The New York Police Department said that it was conducting investigations to “determine if there are any additional complaints relating to the Harvey Weinstein matter”, adding that no complaints had been filed against him yet. The Los Angeles Police Department is also considering opening an investigation against the producer, Deadline reported.

Weinstein has been accused of sexually harassing and raping several female associates and actors, who spoke to The New York Times and The New Yorker. After actors Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan, several other prominent Hollywood women, including Angelina Jolie and Gywneth Paltrow, detailed alleged instances of sexual abuse by Weinstein.

American actor Tara Subkoff is the latest to accuse the producer of sexual harassment. In an interview to Variety on Thursday, Subkoff said that Weinstein had pulled her into his lap at a premiere after party in the 1990s. “I was so surprised and shocked I couldn’t stop laughing because it was so awkward, Subkoff told Variety. “But then I could feel that he had an erection. I got quiet, but got off his lap quickly. He then asked me to come outside with him and other things I don’t want to share, but it was implied that if I did not comply with doing what he asked me to do that I would not get the role that I had already been informally offered.”

After the British Academy of Film and Television Arts suspended Weinstein’s membership on Wednesday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and the Producer’s Guild of America will hold emergency meetings on Saturday to discuss the producer’s membership, Deadline reported.

Quiara Alegría Hudes, who wrote In the Heights, which was adapted on Broadway and produced by The Weinstein Company, has called on the studio to relinquish its rights over the Tony-award winning musical. Writer Lin-Manuel Miranda tweeted his support for Hudes’s call.

Hachette Book Group also announced in a statement that it was terminating the Weinstein Books imprint. Its subsidiary, Perseus Books, had a co-publishing agreement with The Weinstein Company, under which Hachette published approximately ten books each year.

Several actors, including Kate Winslet, Meryl Streep, Judi Dench, Benedict Cumberbatch and Mark Ruffalo, have condemned Weinstein for his actions. In an interview to BBC, British actor Emma Thompson said that the allegations against Weinstein did not shock her. “What I find extraordinary is that this man is at the top of a very particular iceberg,” Thompson said. “He’s a predator. What he is top of the ladder of, is a system of harassment and belittling and bullying and interference.”

Jane Fonda also told CNN’s Christianne Amanpour that she was “proud of those fellow actors that are speaking up”.

On the other hand, American producer Oliver Stone reportedly said that Weinstein “shouldn’t be condemned by a vigilante system”, while responding to a question about the allegations against Weinstein at the Busan International Film Festival on Thursday. “It’s not easy what he’s going through either,” Stone said. “He was a rival and I never did business with him. I’ve heard horror stories on everyone in the business.”

Meanwhile, Amazon Studios announced on Thursday that the company was putting CEO Roy Price on a leave of absence after allegations that he ignored actor Rose McGowan’s claim of a sexual assault by Harvey Weinstein, and harassed a producer.

Rose McGowan’s Twitter account was partially suspended on Thursday after she elaborated on her claims. After McGowan shared the news of her suspension in a post on Instagram, several users devised a plan to boycott Twitter on October 13 in support of McGowan.

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