NEW YORK (AP) — George Clooney has called Harvey Weinstein’s alleged behavior “indefensible” in an interview where he suggested it was well known that the Weinstein Co. chairman was “a dog,” but that few understood his conduct constituted “harassment on a very high level.”
In remarks to the Daily Beast on Monday night, Clooney credited Weinstein for giving him his first big break as an actor in “From Dusk Till Dawn” and as a director in “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.” But he said “I’ve never seen any of this behavior — ever.”
“A lot of people are doing the `you had to know’ thing right now, and yes, if you’re asking if I knew that someone who was very powerful had a tendency to hit on young, beautiful women, sure,” said Clooney. “But I had no idea that it had gone to the level of having to pay off eight women for their silence, and that these women were threatened and victimized.”
Condemnations of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein continue to mount, with Jennifer Lawrence joining the chorus of A-list actors criticizing the movie mogul over allegations he sexually harassed women for decades.
The allegations could prove to be a moment of reckoning for Hollywood, which is facing increased scrutiny over the fair treatment of women in the industry.
Lawrence praised the women who came forward in an expose published last week by The New York Times that detailed Weinstein’s alleged harassment of actresses and employees. Lawrence, who won an Oscar for the Weinstein-produced “Silver Linings Playbook,” says she was never harassed by the mogul.
Among those weighing in were his longtime allies and beneficiaries Meryl Streep, Kate Winslet, Kevin Smith and Judi Dench. They spoke up with a combination of disgust over his alleged behavior and remorse or defensiveness over their own business entanglements with him.
Even the actors’ labor union SAG-AFTRA joined the chorus in condemning the disgraced movie mogul, calling reports of his alleged conduct “abhorrent and unacceptable.”
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