Harvey Weinstein: Wife Georgina Chapman leaves accused producer
The wife of producer Harvey Weinstein has said she is leaving him following allegations of sexual harassment from a string of actresses.
Georgina Chapman, 41, described Weinstein’s actions as “unforgivable”.
Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow are the latest women to come forward. Both said the incidents happened early in their careers.
On Tuesday, Weinstein also denied allegations of rape made in The New Yorker magazine.
Weinstein was fired on Sunday from his own film studio. The Weinstein Company board said on Tuesday that they would help any criminal investigation.
“My heart breaks for all the women who have suffered tremendous pain because of these unforgivable actions,” Georgina Chapman, 41, told People magazine.
Chapman and Weinstein, 65, have two children together.
Meanwhile, ex-President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have joined the growing public condemnation.
In a statement, they said they were “disgusted by the recent reports about Harvey Weinstein” and added that they “celebrate the courage of women who have come forward”.
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Weinstein was a big donor to the Democratic party under Obama’s leadership. The Obamas’ eldest daughter Malia worked as an intern at The Weinstein Company in New York earlier this year.
Weinstein also donated to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. Mrs Clinton said she was “shocked and appalled” by the revelations.
Paltrow and Jolie both sent statements about Weinstein’s behaviour to the New York Times, which first reported allegations against him last week.
Jolie said in an email: “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.
“This behaviour towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable.”
In a statement, Paltrow alleged that, after Weinstein cast her in the leading role in Emma, he summoned her to his hotel suite, where he placed his hands on her and suggested massages in his bedroom.
“I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” she told the newspaper.
She said she told her then-boyfriend Brad Pitt about the incident, and said he confronted Weinstein.
“I thought he was going to fire me,” she said.
Others to have spoken out about their experiences with Weinstein include:
- Three women who told The New Yorker they had been raped by the producer. Italian actress and director Asia Argento told The New Yorker she was forced into a sexual act with Weinstein and had not spoken out until now because she feared it would have harmed her career
- Lucia Stoller, now Lucia Evans, told the magazine that Weinstein approached her in 2004 and also forced her into a sexual act
- The third woman was not named by the magazine but said Weinstein “forced himself on me sexually”
- Mira Sorvino, who won an Oscar in 1996 for her role in Mighty Aphrodite for Weinstein’s Miramax studio, told The New Yorker that Weinstein had tried to pressure her into a relationship
- Rosanna Arquette said she rejected Weinstein’s advances and believes her acting career suffered as a result
- Heather Graham said in a Variety interview that Weinstein implied she had to sleep with him to appear in one of his films
- British actress Romola Garai says she was left feeling “violated” when she was auditioned by Weinstein as an 18-year-old. She said the producer came to the door wearing a bathrobe, describing his behaviour as an “abuse of power”
- The initial New York Times report, which broke the story, said actresses Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan had accused Weinstein of serious sexual misconduct
- Zoe Brock, a writer and model, said Weinstein took his clothes off in a hotel room and asked her for a massage
The New Yorker report also said 16 former and current employees at Weinstein’s companies “witnessed or had knowledge of unwanted sexual advances and touching at events associated with Weinstein’s films and in the workplace”.
Weinstein’s spokeswoman Sallie Hofmeister issued a statement in response to the article.
“Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr Weinstein,” she said. “Mr Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances.
“Mr Weinstein obviously can’t speak to anonymous allegations, but with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, Mr Weinstein believes that all of these relationships were consensual. Mr Weinstein has begun counselling, has listened to the community and is pursuing a better path.”
Meanwhile, actress Lindsay Lohan posted an Instagram story – which she later deleted – appearing to defend Weinstein, saying: “I feel very bad for Harvey Weinstein right now. I don’t think it’s right what’s going on.”
Buzzfeed reporter Lauren Yap did a screen grab and posted Lohan’s video, in which she also posted an angel emoji under Weinstein’s name, on Twitter. Lohan also said Chapman should “be there for her husband” – although it’s not clear if she knew at the time that Chapman had said she was leaving him.