‘It wasn’t secondhand. I knew he did a couple of these things’
From the editors of InStyle US
Words by Jennifer Davis
Hollywood’s Quentin Tarantino is finally opening up about Harvey Weinstein’s sexual abuse scandal, finally admitting that he knew enough to have done more.
The acclaimed director, who worked closely with the producer for decades on films including Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, and the Kill Bill series had previously only released a statement through his friend Amber Tamblyn, who shared it on Twitter Oct. 13.
‘For the last week I’ve been stunned and heartbroken about the revelations that have come to light about my friend for 25 years Harvey Weinstein,’ he said at the time after Lena Dunham called for Hollywood men to speak out about the accusations. ‘I need a few more days to process my pain, emotions, anger, and memory and then I will speak publicly about it.’
In an interview with the New York Times published this week, Tarantino went into more detail and explained that he knew of the former Hollywood heavyweight’s alleged misconduct for years and feels a deep regret that he did not do more.
‘I knew enough to do more than I did,’ he told the Times, referring to several incidents including his ex-girlfriend Mira Sorvino’s account. ‘There was more to it than just the normal rumours, the normal gossip. It wasn’t secondhand. I knew he did a couple of these things.’
‘I wish I had taken responsibility for what I heard,’ he continued. ‘If I had done the work I should have done then, I would have had to not work with him.’
Tarantino went on to recount the time when Sorvino told him that Weinstein had chased her naked around a hotel room and once showed up at her apartment in the middle of the night. ‘I was shocked and appalled,’ Tarantino recalled. ‘I couldn’t believe he would do that so openly.’
Even though he heard her story directly from the actress and was aware the Rose McGowan had reached a private settlement with Weinstein, as reported by the New York Times, Tarantino says he did not recognise the broad scope and degree of alleged abuse. ‘What I did was marginalise the incidents,’ he said, writing off what he heard as mild misbehaviour. ‘Anything I say now will sound like a crappy excuse.’
The director also went on to clarify that those in Weinstein’s inner circle were not ignorant about his behaviour. ‘Everyone who was close to Harvey had heard of at least one of those incidents’ chronicled in the first few articles, he said. ‘It was impossible they didn’t.’
While he was aware of the incidents then, he says he is committed to making sure that the industry changes. ‘I’m calling on the other guys who knew more to not be scared. Don’t just give out statements. Acknowledge that there was something rotten in Denmark. Vow to do better by our sisters,’ he said. ‘What was previously accepted is now untenable to anyone of a certain consciousness.’