Brad Pitt once threatened to beat up Harvey Weinstein after he allegedly harassed Gwyneth Paltrow
Earlier this week, The New York times published an explosive investigation into the hidden history of sexual harassment by movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. The expose revealed that the 65-year-old Hollywood producer was accused of multiple counts of sexual assault, as claimed by a number of female actresses he worked with over three decades of his career.
Since the article was published, a handful more alleged victims have come forward with their own stories. Just yesterday, The New York Times published another article naming the other women coming forward to speak out against Weinstein, including uber-actresses Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie.
Paltrow revealed in a new interview that when she was just 22, she was hired by Weinstein for the lead role in the Jane Austen film adaptation of Emma. The now 45-year-old told how before shooting began, Weinstein invited her to his hotel suite for a business meeting. When they finished working, Weinstein allegedly placed his hands on her and suggested they move to the bedroom for "massages".
Paltrow said she refused his come-on, feeling stunned and adding how she felt vulnerable and worried about her fledgling career at the time: “I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified.”
After the hotel room incident, 22-year-old Paltrow confided in her boyfriend at the time, Brad Pitt. After hearing about the harassment to his girlfriend, Pitt told the New York Times through a representative that he approached Weinstein at a movie event and told him never to touch her again.
Another source told People about what happened: “Brad threatened Harvey. He got right in his face, poked him in the chest and said, ‘You will not ever do this to Gwyneth ever again'."
It was a risky move for Pitt, who was only a burgeoning actor himself. But he wanted to take a stand against the powerful Hollywood producer, the source saying that Pitt “made it clear there would be consequences” if Weinstein made a move again, and “described it as giving Harvey a ‘Missouri whooping.'”
Missouri is where Pitt grew up, for those who didn't know. In response, the source said that Weinstein tried to explain at first, but "then he stopped and listened and got the message."
After the confrontation, Weinstein warned the young actress not to tell anyone else about his advances. “I thought he was going to fire me,” Paltrow said. Weinstein supposedly phoned Paltrow and blasted her for talking about what happened. “He screamed at me for a long time,” she said, “It was brutal.”
Despite the harassment during Emma, Paltrow went on to work with Weinstein on other films over the years, including the Weinstein-produced Shakespeare in Love, for which she won an Oscar.
In the same article, Jolie revealed that she worked with Weinstein in the late 1990s when starring in Playing by Heart, and that she also rejected unwanted advances he made on her in a hotel room.
“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,” Jolie said in an email to the New York Times.
It makes you wonder though, that surely in her 12-year relationship with Pitt, Jolie probably confided in him as well. While Pitt valiantly defended then-girlfriend Paltrow at the time of her assault, it shows how complicit many people have been regarding Weinstein's behaviour.
It's been said that many people in the industry knew of Weinstein's behaviour, yet stayed silent about it for years. Sixteen former and current executives at The Weinstein Company have recently come forward to testify that they knew of his predatory behaviour, although he was only fired after the news was published in the mass media this week.
When film producer Emily Best found out, she said she was not surprised. “The industry at large,” she said, “provided shelter for his bad behaviour directly and indirectly” by staying silent.
Still, Weinstein has been fired, the man is receiving a severe (albeit delayed) public shaming, AND his wife has finally said she's leaving him, quickly. He had it coming.