And if he did say this?

The disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer has claimed that his client was misquoted in an interview where he’s cited as admitting to having offered acting jobs in exchange for sex.

In a conversation, as reported by the Spectator, the 66-year-old producer defended his behavior as a widespread practice in the entertainment industry. He denied ever physically coercing women in his first interview since being accused by more than 75 women of sexual assault and misconduct.

“You were born rich and privileged and you were handsome,” he reportedly said to the journalist Taki Theodoracopulos, who is also his friend. “I was born poor, ugly, Jewish and had to fight all my life to get somewhere. You got lotsa girls, no girl looked at me until I made it big in Hollywood. Yes, I did offer them acting jobs in exchange for sex, but so did and still does everyone. But I never, ever forced myself on a single woman.”

Is offering an acting job in return for sex illegal? Should it be?

23 comments on “And if he did say this?

  1. “If I buy you a drink/dinner, will you come to bed with me?”

    That (usually unspoken) conversation will take place a million times in America this weekend. How is Weinstein’s behaviour any different?

  2. It depends.

    First off it is not illegal to be nudie in your own space. It is not illegal to show your nudie carcass to another in your own space. Both of those would be illegal if there happened in a public space or in her space (if she doesn’t want that in her space of course and has not given permission). A hotel room is yours subject to any house rules. I don’t imagine posh hotels have rules saying that you can’t be naked inside your room or you can’t have a shag in their hotel. Such rules would hardly help to fill expensive hotel chambers.

    So unless Weinstein blocked the women’s egress from the room with his nudieness or actually physically attacked them I can’t see he has done anything illegal. Making an offer of sex –regardless of your being naked or not–in your own space where the women are free to leave is not an assault.

    As for offering work for sex –that is not immoral. An exchange of value for value without coercion is not immoral. The women were perfectly free to refuse. Nor is it clear that refusing=the end of her career. Several VERY successful actresses have claimed the did refuse. And they still became successful. So either Harv was not vindictive or did not have the power he claimed/thought he had.

    Their is a civil matter of whether Harv was an agent for other investors or was financing the movies with his own cash. If he was an agent of investors charged with doing all he could to make money then choosing the best actress would be part of his responsibilities. Using the criteria ~”Will she shag me or not?” is betraying his responsibility to the investors.

    Also the tales of Mr W seem to have undergone Savile style grotesque inflation. An unpleasant man carrying on the long-standing traditions of Hollywood has now morphed into another Master Pervert with legions of victims and God knows what other crimes laid at his door. Classic Marxist-feminist bullshit.

    The same nonsense is being tagged to Spacey for the other team. “Molested” a 14 year old boy–who just happened to be hanging around in a notorious homosexual dive.

    The tall tale of Spacey molesting 20 men at a London Theatre is another case. 20 men? What –all at once? Is Spacey the Bruce Lee of homosexual assault?

    These characters are sleezy beyond doubt. The rest of it remains to be seen.

  3. Shareholders probably expect him to find the best person for each acting job and not to destroy the company. But that isn’t what the trial is about.
    He is making a distinction between non-consensual sex and the distribution of favours by a gatekeeper. Even if the court can make the distinction, it’s not likely that much of the public will be able to follow the argument.
    If he successfully defends himself from the rape accusations, maybe he will be done under employment law.

  4. It does appear that any actress who could convincingly act as though she fancied Mr Weinstein was very talented as an actress- hence he was picking the best actresses to cast.

  5. I’m reminded of the old joke: –

    Him: Would you sleep with me for a million pounds?

    Her: In a flash!

    Him: How about £10?

    Her: What kind of woman do you think I am?!

    Him: We’ve just determined that, now we’re negotiating a price.

  6. This is going to be the motherlode of hypocrisy. Everyone knows Hollywood is a cesspit, always has, always will be. Lucky for them they are all actors.

  7. I’m pretty sure that in any other line of work, if during a *job interview* there’s even a hint of sexual quid-pro-quo there’d be a shitstorm of the highest magnitude.
    Why should “Hollywood” be different ?

    Sex-for-a-job is coercion, pure and simple. At any level, in any industry.
    (no.. not even in porn.. Pro’s Don’t Do Freebies…)

  8. “he reportedly said to the journalist Taki Theodoracopulos, who is also his friend.”

    Much as Taki can be an interesting read, is he the sort of “journalist” one can trust to report an interview anywhere near verbatim?

    I hope both kept taped copies of the “interview”.

  9. Grikath–It is only coercion if you have no choice. If you can say no and walk away it isn’t coercion.

  10. It can work the other way round, I have been offered a blowjob as an incentive by Big Liz on the meat packers line to hire her niece (28 yrs old) who has spent more time in and out of young offenders institutions , re-hab etc than being employed.

    Infact she said her niece would oblige.

    6 weeks and fuck all so far, except a conversation with the niece about joining the Trade Union.

    Mind you she has set the benchmark for the other girls speed packing meat.

  11. Mr Ecks said:
    “Their is a civil matter of whether Harv was an agent for other investors or was financing the movies with his own cash. If he was an agent of investors charged with doing all he could to make money then choosing the best actress would be part of his responsibilities. Using the criteria ~”Will she shag me or not?” is betraying his responsibility to the investors. ”

    Yup, that’s the bit that’s wrong (although I suppose he could argue that there was nothing to choose between the acting abilities of those on the shortlist).

    It’s like politicians, bribing people with other people’s money.

  12. I can see where this is headed. Prosecuting lawyers will claim that Weinstein was defrauding investors and hit him with all manner of conspiracy and wire fraud charges.

    “Couldn’t help but make me feel ashamed to live in a land
    Where justice is a game”
    – Hurricane, Bob Dylan

  13. Dunno. It’s besides the point though. If Weinstein is spinning it to sympathetic interviewers as offering roles for romps, his *actual* behaviour was probably much worse.

    See also: Bryan Singer, Roman Polanski.

  14. Taki is well known for talking about the Good Old Days – when Germany ran his own country of Greece. As well as his strong defence of the Greek King and the Colonels. He is a major funder of marginally acceptable journals known for their …. ummm anti-Zionist stance. He is notorious for his loud and often very funny condemnations of Hollywood figures – many of whom he points out are Jewish.

    I love the guy myself. But I find it hard he does anything but loath Harvey Weinstein.

  15. We know for sure that one of his original principal accusers, Rose McGowan, slept with him. As this trial progresses other names will come out too; he’s been keeping his powder dry on this I’m sure. The thought if all of this feminist hypocry being exposed gives me a nasty pleasure.

  16. Weinstein appears to still believe the school boy myth that it doesn’t matter what you look like or how you are as long as you are rich and famous women will want to sleep with you.

    As our host has pointed out repeatedly, it doesn’t actually work like that.

    So we seem to have a man who is predatory and a mass of insecurity. Not a happy combination.

  17. It should be illegal as it takes vulnerable men and women to do things that they may deeply regret. Especially when it is fr under age actors.

  18. @Joey Define ‘vulnerable’. And I haven’t seen any allegations of illegally ‘under age’ activities (though I can’t claim to have followed all the accusations intently.

    If you want to prevent anyone from doing things they may later regret, you’re going to be kept extremely busy.

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