Ronan Farrow, one of the journalists who broke the Harvey Weinstein story, is revealing the surprising lengths the disgraced movie mogul went to, to keep his alleged misconduct under wraps. Since the allegations surfaced in 2017, dozens of women have accused him of misconduct, assault and rape. Weinstein is currently facing criminal charges in NYC.
His account was published in The New Yorker Monday, and also serves as an excerpt of his book, Catch and Kill, about the reporting process.
Farrow and others were placed under intense surveillance, he writes. Weinstein allegedly hired Israeli private intel agency Black Cube to spy on him and the women who accused him of misconduct. Farrow also says they were tracked and threatened by Black Cube and Weinstein’s lawyers.
“Hiring the agency was only a part of Weinstein’s larger effort to prevent the disclosure of the sexual-abuse claims. He also hired the private-investigation firm co-founded by Jack Palladino, who was best known for working to undermine women who had accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct,” Farrow writes.
He continues: “As a part of its work for Weinstein, Palladino’s firm created dossiers on both journalists and accusers. Under the guise of assembling research for a book about his company, Weinstein also hired some of his former employees to compile lists of targets and then contact the people on those lists. The lists included reporters at The New Yorker, the (New York) Times, and New York magazine; the actresses Rose McGowan, Rosanna Arquette, and Annabella Sciorra; and secondary sources who might be able to confirm those women’s stories.”
Catch and Kill will be out this month.
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Rowena Chiu, Weinstein’s former assistant at Miramax Films, shared her heartbreaking allegations against him in The New York Times. She writes that he attempted to rape her 21 years ago, saying that he told her beforehand that “he liked Chinese girls … because they were discreet”.
“You've most likely never heard of me. I'm not an actress,” Chiu wrote in the op-ed. “I don't even work in Hollywood anymore. I was one of many ordinary, unfamous women trying to do their jobs who were abused by Harvey.”
The same story we’ve read before, of promises of career advancement in exchange for sexual favors played out here. She wrote: “After hours of fending off his chitchat, flattery, requests for massages and a bath, ultimately I found myself pushed back against the bed,” she recalled. “I'd worn two pairs of tights for protection, and tried to appease him by taking one of them off and letting him massage me, but it hadn't worked. He'd taken off the other pair and I was terrified my underwear would be next. Harvey moved in: 'Please,' he told me, 'just one thrust, and it will all be over.'”
She said that after she tried to report him, she eventually settled for about $300,000.