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Entertainment

AFP
December 16, 2019

Disgraced Weinstein believes sexual misconduct allegations overshadowed work

Entertainment

AFP
Mon, Dec 16, 2019
Harvey Weinstein appears at his arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court on Friday, May 25, 2018. Photo: Jefferson Siegel-Pool/AFP

WASHINGTON: Disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein has complained that the world has forgotten how he "pioneered" casting women prominently in his films, following dozens of sex-crime allegations that left him feeling "eviscerated."

The once-powerful film producer, whose case sparked the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment, faces a criminal trial next month that could see him jailed for life.

In an interview with the New York Post tabloid, the 67-year-old said: "I feel like the forgotten man."

"I made more movies directed by women and about women than any filmmaker and I'm talking about 30 years ago.

"I'm not talking about now when it's vogue. I did it first! I pioneered it! It all got eviscerated because of what happened," Weinstein added.

Last week he reached a $25 million settlement to be shared among more than 30 actresses and former employees who have sued him for offenses ranging from sexual harassment to rape.

Weinstein will not have to admit wrongdoing or pay from his own pocket, according to news portal TMZ. Instead the bill will be met by insurers for his bankrupt former movie studio, The Weinstein Company.

"Everything that Harvey Weinstein has done professionally for women is overshadowed by the serious allegations of sexual misconduct made by more than 60 women," lawyer Gloria Allred, who represents some of the accusers, said in a statement to ABC News.

"He is not forgotten. He is a defendant in a high profile criminal case in which he is charged with serious crimes against women including rape, criminal sexual assault, and allegations of predatory sexual assault," she added.

Weinstein's accusers include some of the world's most famous actresses — including Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow and Salma Hayek — although none is part of the proceedings.

He faces a criminal trial in January on charges of rape and forcibly performing oral sex on a woman — to which he has pleaded not guilty.