Kate Beckinsale Is the Latest Actress to Speak Out Against Harvey Weinstein
Kate Beckinsale is the latest actress to come forward with a personal story about disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein.
The British actress (Underworld, Pearl Harbor) said in an Instagram post on Thursday that she rejected Weinstein’s sexual advances in a meeting with the movie producer that took place when Beckinsale was only 17 years old.
Beckinsale wrote in the social media post that she met with Weinstein as a teenager at London’s Savoy Hotel, where she claims the movie executive greeted her in his hotel room wearing a bathrobe. “I was incredibly naive and young and it did not cross my mind that this older, unattractive man would expect me to have any sexual interest in him,” Beckinsale said. “After declining alcohol and announcing that I had school in the morning I left, uneasy but unscathed.”
The actress went on to note that, years later, Weinstein asked her “if he had tried anything” in their first meeting. “I realized he couldn’t remember if he had assaulted me or not,” she said on Thursday. Beckinsale wrote that she’s rejected Weinstein in professional situations at various points over her career, which she said sometimes resulted in the producer “screaming” at her or “making threats.”
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I was called to meet Harvey Weinstein at the Savoy Hotel when I was 17. I assumed it would be in a conference room which was very common.When I arrived ,reception told me to go to his room . He opened the door in his bathrobe . I was incredibly naive and young and it did not cross my mind that this older ,unattractive man would expect me to have any sexual interest in him .After declining alcohol and announcing that I had school in the morning I left ,uneasy but unscathed.A few years later he asked me if he had tried anything with me in that first meeting .I realized he couldn't remember if he had assaulted me or not .I had what I thought were boundaries – I said no to him professionally many times over the years-some of which ended up with him screaming at me calling me a cunt and making threats, some of which made him laughingly tell people oh "Kate lives to say no to me ." It speaks to the status quo in this business that I was aware that standing up for myself and saying no to things,while it did allow me to feel uncompromised in myself,undoubtedly harmed my career and was never something I felt supported by anyone other than my family.I would like to applaud the women who have come forward , and to pledge that we can from this create a new paradigm where producers,managers,executives and assistants and everyone who has in the past shrugged and said " well, that's just Harvey /Mr X/insert name here " will realize that we in numbers can affect real change.For every moment like this there have been thousands where a vulnerable person has confided outrageous unprofessional behavior and found they have no recourse, due to an atmosphere of fear that it seems almost everyone has been living in .I had a male friend who, based on my experience,warned a young actress who said she was going to dinner with Harvey to be careful. He received a phone call the next day saying he would never work in another Miramax film ;the girl was already sleeping with Harvey and had told him that my friend had warned her off.Let's stop allowing our young women to be sexual cannon fodder,and let's remember that Harvey is an emblem of a system that is sick,and that we have work to do.
“It speaks to the status quo in this business that I was aware that standing up for myself and saying no to things, while it did allow me to feel uncompromised in myself, undoubtedly harmed my career and was never something I felt supported by anyone other than my family,” Beckinsale said.
Several other women have come forward in the past week to accuse Weinstein of sexual harassment or assault, including high-profile actresses such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Rose McGowan, and Ashley Judd. On Sunday, the board of directors at The Weinstein Company fired Weinstein from the company he co-founded in the wake of the allegations, and the New York Police Department has reportedly launched a criminal investigation into one assault allegation against Weinstein from an incident in 2004.
On Tuesday, Weinstein’s spokesperson issued a statement in response to several of the allegations of sexual harassment and assault: “Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr Weinstein.” Fortune contacted Weinstein’s spokeswoman, Sallie Hofmeister, on Thursday and we will update this article with any response. In a video from Wednesday obtained by TMZ, Weinstein is seen saying “we all make mistakes” while noting that he is hoping for a “second chance.”