Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences expels Weinstein over allegations


Harvey Weinstein

Harvey Weinstein in Sun Valley, Idaho, July 12, 2017. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

(JTA) — The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences expelled producer Harvey Weinstein.

An emergency meeting of the academy’s board on Saturday “voted well in excess of the required two-thirds majority,” the body that awards the Oscars said in a statement. Weinstein, who is Jewish, was expelled amid mounting sexual harassment, assault and rape accusations.

“We do so not simply to separate ourselves from someone who does not merit the respect of his colleagues but also to send a message that the era of willful ignorance and shameful complicity in sexually predatory behavior and workplace harassment in our industry is over. What’s at issue here is a deeply troubling problem that has no place in our society. The Board continues to work to establish ethical standards of conduct that all Academy members will be expected to exemplify,” the statement said.

According to a New York Times’ expose of Weinstein — who produced many box office hits including “Pulp Fiction,” “Sex, Lies and Videotape,” “The Crying Game” and “Clerks” — he used his position of influence in Hollywood to demand sexual favors from actresses and female assistants over the past three decades.

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He has paid off at least eight women to settle complaints about his lewd behavior, according to the Times report published on Oct. 5.

The women, most in their early to mid-20s at the time, said Weinstein would appear near or fully naked, make them watch him bathe or give him a massage, and in at least one instance press a young employee for sex, The Times reported.

Some were paid $80,000 to $150,000 each to make their complaints go away, The Times said, with “Scream” actress McGowan, then 23, getting $100,000 in 1997 over an incident that took place during the Sundance Film Festival

A week ago, on Oct. 8, Weinstein, 65, was fired from the movie production firm he started in 2005, The Weinstein Company. Prior to that, Weinstein and his brother Bob Weinstein founded Miramax.

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