Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson and More Weigh in on Weinstein Allegations
Every day, more women step forward to join the growing chorus of those who were sexually assaulted or harassed by Harvey Weinstein. The famed Hollywood executive has been accused of abusing his power to victimize dozens of women, but each new, horrible story is matched by another celebrity essay or social media post denouncing Weinstein and offering support to the (seemingly) countless number of women who survived him. We can now add Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson, Ryan Gosling (and more) to the list of their supporters.
Speaking with the New York Times, Tom Hanks said that although he’s never worked with Weinstein, “But, aah, it all just sort of fits, doesn’t it?” When asked why Weinstein was “sheltered” by Hollywood for so long, Hanks offered:
Well, that’s a really good question and isn’t it part and parcel to all of society somehow, that people in power get away with this? Look, I don’t want to rag on Harvey but so obviously something went down there. You can’t buy, ‘Oh, well, I grew up in the ’60s and ’70s and so therefore. …’ I did, too. So I think it’s like, well, what do you want from this position of power? I know all kinds of people that just love hitting on, or making the lives of underlings some degree of miserable, because they can.
He went on to quote either Winston Churchill, Oprah or Immanuel Kant — he couldn’t remember which — by saying, “When you become rich and powerful, you become more of what you already are.” Hanks continued:
So I would say, there’s an example of how that’s true. Just because you’re rich and famous and powerful doesn’t mean you aren’t in some ways a big fat ass. Excuse me, take away ‘fat.’ But I’m not, you know, I’m not the first person to say Harvey’s a bit of an ass. Poor Harvey — I’m not going to say poor Harvey, Jesus. Isn’t it kind of amazing that it took this long?
As Hanks subsequently points out, shows like Mad Men — which take place during the so-called “excusable” era in which Weinstein grew up — were far from nostalgic about the toxic misogyny of the time. Emma Thompson, who co-starred with Hanks in Saving Mr. Banks, further drives the point home in an upcoming interview with BBC Newsnight, in which she rightfully clarifies that Weinstein is not a sex addict — “He’s a predator.”
Emma Thompson tells us the Harvey Weinstein allegations are just the tip of the iceberg of a wider and systemic problem in Hollywood pic.twitter.com/VDxswrUP5Z
— BBC Newsnight (@BBCNewsnight) October 12, 2017
Thompson explains that she’s “not surprised” about the Weinstein allegations, describing him as a man “at the top of a very particular iceberg,” who highlights a “system of harassment, and belittling, and bullying, and interference.” Weinstein’s predatory behaviors are, as Thompson notes, “endemic” to this system, and adds that he’s far from the only man in Hollywood guilty of abusing his power and privilege to take advantage of and victimize women. When the reporter asks if such men would yield a similar number of allegations, Thompson brilliantly responds:
Do they have to all be as bad as him to make it count? Does it only count if you really have done it to loads and loads and loads of women? Or does it count if you do it to one woman, once? I think the latter.
On Twitter, Ryan Gosling offered his support to the women who continue to come forward with allegations of sexual harassment and assault at the hands of Weinstein. Gosling, who has worked with Weinstein in the past, adds that he’s “deeply disappointed” in himself for “being so oblivious to these devastating experiences”:
— Ryan Gosling (@RyanGosling) October 12, 2017
Other celebrities who have spoken out this week to denounce Weinstein’s actions and applaud the courage of his victims include Charlize Theron, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Julianne Moore and numerous others.