Heather Graham: Harvey Weinstein implied sex-for-scripts in the early 2000s

Variety Night of the Stars

Some of the women who have come forward with their stories and messages of support have sort of slipped through the cracks of our coverage here, so I know I’m late with some of these, but they’re worth discussing. Harvey Weinstein was a sexual predator for decades, and the women he harassed and assaulted seem to span from the early 1990s to present day. I’m doing bullet-point summaries here, but please check out the links for more complete stories.

Mira Sorvino. Mira Sorvino was one of the women who spoke on-the-record to Ronan Farrow about Harvey Weinstein and how he harassed her and aggressively “pursued” her when she showed zero interest in him. Mira also penned an essay for Entertainment Weekly, which you can read here. She talks about living in “vague fear” of Weinstein for the past 20 years, and details how she tried to deal with it at the time by going to a female employee at Miramax and telling her what happened, and the woman did nothing.

Charlize Theron. Charlize was not surprised, but she says she was never abused or harassed by Weinstein. She posted this message to her Instagram: “The women who have spoken about their abuse are brave and heroic and although I didn’t have a personal experience like this with Harvey Weinstein, I unfortunately cannot say I’m surprised. This culture has always existed, not just in Hollywood, but across the world…Men in positions of power have gotten away with it for far too long. We cannot blame the victims here. A lot of these women are young, just starting out in their respective fields, and have absolutely no way to stand up to a man with so much influence, much greater than theirs.”

Heather Graham. Graham wrote her story about Weinstein in a Variety piece. She details how, in the early 2000s, Weinstein called her into his office and offered her a selection of scripts, then “later in the conversation, he mentioned that he had an agreement with his wife. He could sleep with whomever he wanted when he was out of town. I walked out of the meeting feeling uneasy. There was no explicit mention that to star in one of those films I had to sleep with him, but the subtext was there.” There was a follow-up meeting at a hotel, but she canceled it because she knew what was coming. He ended up never hiring her for any of his films. You can read her essay here.

Alyssa Milano. Alyssa worked with Rose McGowan on Charmed, and Alyssa was being criticized for not vocally supporting Rose. Alyssa did write something on her website this week saying that she was silent because she’s friends with Georgina Chapman and she knows their family very well but “Please don’t confuse my silence for anything other than respect for a dear friend and her beautiful children.” Milano continued: “While I am sickened and angered over the disturbing accusations of Weinstein’s sexual predation and abuse of power, I’m happy—ecstatic even—that it has opened a dialogue around the continued sexual harassment, objectification and degradation of women. To the women who have suffered any form of abuse of power, I stand beside you. To the women who have come forward against a system that is designed to keep you silent, I stand in awe of you and appreciate you and our fortitude.”

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72 Responses to “Heather Graham: Harvey Weinstein implied sex-for-scripts in the early 2000s”

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  1. Handwoven says:

    Heather’s story is important as well – I mean everyone’s is important, but one thing worth noting – because she points out that a lot of women didn’t “complain publicly” or “come forward” because as she points out:

    “We don’t want to be attacked for reading into something that may or may not have been there. We don’t want to be looked at as weak for not being able to handle ourselves in a business run by men. We don’t want to lose work by being defined as a Difficult Woman”

  2. bros says:

    Charlize’s statement just reinforces that he chose his victims and was a predator. There’s nothing that would make me not believe her. just like if Jennifer Lawrence said she never had the experience, I believe her.

    • lunchcoma says:

      Yes, the typical predator doesn’t prey on every woman he comes across, or even every woman who’s his type. Maybe Charlize doesn’t do it for him, maybe he sensed for some reason she wouldn’t be a good victim, maybe he never had the opportunity, maybe he just wasn’t in the mood to victimize anyone on the days he met with her.

      • Honeybee Blues says:

        Or maybe he knew that CT’s mother shot and killed her abusive husband, CT’s father. Perhaps he feared that apple fell to close to the tree and didn’t want to risk getting his ass shot off, if not by CT, then by her mother.

      • PPP says:

        I don’t mean this to indicate anything about other actresses, but Charlize has always projected a certain dontfuckwithme attitude.

      • magnoliarose says:

        @PPP

        I know what you mean, Charlize looks like she would stomp someone to death with her biker boots. I wonder if it mattered who they were dating at the time too. Just a thought.

      • Julianna says:

        Charlize was dating the Stephan Jenkins, the frontman for Third Eye Blind, at the time she worked with Weinstein. So in her case, I don’t think that would of been a factor, not if Brad Pitt wasn’t a factor when he harassed Gwyneth. And JLaw was with Hoult (or on a break with Hoult, I don’t remember their timeline), which again, I can’t see that being a factor.

        I’m sure there’s some women he never went near because they were dating/had dated friends or similarly powerful people. Minnie Driver said she didn’t experience any harassment, and it’s possible the fact she’d started dating Damon was what stopped him with her.

    • Jules343 says:

      This. Charlize worked with him twice, in 98 and 99, when her career was only just starting to build a little momentum. If he targeted every young actress who crossed his path, she would have been one of them, but she wasn’t.

      Hopefully now certain people will drop the narrative that he ‘must have’ abused every young woman who ever worked with him. It’s a narrative that lacks any understanding of how sexual predators behave, not to mention a narrative that only serves to further the idea that women lie about these things.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        And it underscores the thought and cunning that go into the selection of victims as well — it’s more than a matter of impulse.

      • noway says:

        We have a tendency to demonize these men. While I understand the emotion, one unintended consequence is women think these creeps are easy to spot, and they aren’t. The other problem is we start to blame other women who didn’t warn us, and we don’t know what the other women’s experience has been. Granted Harvey looks like a creep, but I could see how Gwyneth thought of him as Uncle Harvey too. Bill Cosby was Fat Albert and did funny Jello commercials. Not all men abuse women, but enough do, we need to stop thinking these guys have a warning label.

        Also, women shouldn’t have to do this, but if you hear rumors about a man harassing others believe them, and try to mitigate the chances of him harassing you. Don’t think he won’t do that to me. Reality is there is probably little or no reason on why and who these creeps choose as victims. I hate that women have to think about this, but just like you don’t walk alone at night, I think all women have to think of this even if the person doesn’t seem that way to you.

      • Gill G says:

        Yes, exactly. There’s a common element to all these heart-breaking stories – namely that Weinstein was abusing vulnerable actresses, who were starting out early in the careers and looking for parts in his films, whom he felt he could victimise with impunity. Charlize with her personal/family history did not fit that template. Neither did Jennifer Lawrence, who was established as a player when they worked on Silver Linings together, and had also already been selected for the lead by David O Russell. Same goes for Alicia Vikander and others.

  3. happyoften says:

    I like Alyssa Milano, but something about her using HW children as cover for her lack of support is…. icky. If she knew her wonderful friend was married to a rapist, wouldn’t you want to protect those children from him?

    I don’t know the nature of her and Rose’s relationship, so commenting seems presumptuous. But let’s not pretend you were respecting children by your silence, shall we? I think it best to just avoid hiding behind them.

    I have the utmost respect, however, for all of the brave women that continue to come forward to share their stories.

    • bros says:

      I dont think she should be judged based on what statement she has issued publicly. You dont know if she’s called Rose or if they have talked over the years. There’s not one formula for women and men to show/demonstrate support. not everything has to be tweeted or statements through publicists or on instagram.

      • happyoften says:

        If she didn’t want to be judged on her public statements, she wouldn’t have issued one. She just hoped she would be judged favorably.

        Don’t blame your lack of support, and yes, befriending the wife of Rose’s rapist is lacking in the support dept., on your respect for your friend’s beautful children. Not issuing a statement at all would be best.

        As I said, I don’t know what her and Rose’s personal relationship entails, I do know Alyssa’s stated reasoning for her public silence … I was thinking about the CHILDREN! … is gross.

      • Heylee says:

        @happyoften ITA that her statement really is off in some way. It rings so odd as it is almost defensive and then celebratory. I just don’t see someone saying this in real life and it, in my opinion, lacks an empathy about the seriousness of sexual assault and rape. I would never say to a woman’s face that I am ecstatic that her horrible and unjust experience has started a dialogue about similar experiences.

    • lisa says:

      ita her statement is poorly worded at best (ecstatic jeez) and hiding behind children like they are better off with a predator in the house.

    • H says:

      NO. Alyssa Milano gets no passes from me. Her statement was ridiculous. She went on and on about how when she started in the business she was called an “actress” not an actor. She didn’t really address the victims nor did she praise Rose for her courage in coming out about her abuse, nor offer her support. She only wrote about how she was friends with Georgina and her children and that’s why she felt bad about writing her statement. It was the most self serving thing ever. You could tell she didn’t want to write it.

      Plus, Rose unfollowed her after she posted it. Rose has said publicly that only ONE cast member contacted her and offered her support during this time. That was a man, fellow actor Johnathon Schaech. So yeah, Alyssa is only being supportive of Chapman and probably wouldn’t have spoken out unless people kept bugging her on Twitter.

      I’m giving Holly Marie Combs, fellow Charmed actor, a pass because she’s been vocal about this on social media and at least publicly supporting Rose and the other women. But Milano…no. I’m ragey today about this.

    • perplexed says:

      I have no opinion on the statement she did put out (i.e whether it was good or not or made sense or didn’t make sense), but I’m surprised she was expected to give one. I figured she didn’t give a statement because she’s not really that famous in the way Meryl Streep or George Clooney is. Or at least that’s the assumption I would have made away. Granted, the assumption I made was probably wrong. But I think I forgot Alyssa Milano existed.

  4. gatorbait says:

    I was trying to list the times I have been raped/ assaulted and lost count. It seems to happen regularly. I have been forcibly fingered at a club, grabbed and air humped by another guy in another club, forced to perform oral in high school on a friend, groomed by a much older man when in high school, raped anally by same man, forced into prostitution by SAME man, impregnated and badgered into considering an abortion I did not want by SAME man, raped by good friend at party, assaulted by my brother’s friend, propositioned for sex and degraded when I said no by my dad’s employee/ friend/ bible study group member, my older brother confessed his lust for me after a get together while his wife slept in the next room, raped by roommates boyfriend while passed out drunk in MY room, groped by multiple men in work environments, and it goes on and on and on and I know I’m forgetting many. I blocked a lot of the smaller instances. Lots of bjs that started out consensual and ending with me sobbing from the pain of them trying to deep throat. Ugh. I want to go cry now.

    • bros says:

      Gatorbait, you should go straight from this post to finding a counselor who specializes in PTSD and sex assualt and if you can’t afford it, look into community mental health services. Go talk this out with someone who will give you a caring and professional ear and strategies for coping and also ways to minimize the opportunities for this to happen again to you. Sorry you’ve gone through all this in your life.

      • gatorbait says:

        I see a psychologist but I’m not sure of her specialties. I haven’t been in therapy in over 7 years prior. I’m also going to see my physician for a new anti depressant today. Money is an issue for me but I do what I can to get by. It gets more difficult every year though. I’ve closed myself off from new people and most friends and I am still depressed. It’s a daily struggle.

    • ell says:

      i’m so sorry.

      i was talking with some female friends recently, and honestly, i barely know any woman who hasn’t been harassed and/or assaulted at least once in her life. we still have such a long way to go to make this better.

      • gatorbait says:

        Thank you.

        That’s another thing. I know not one woman in my life that hasn’t been harassed/ assaulted/ violated/ raped in their life at some point. It’s time this ends.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Ditto. And so many of us know that if we told certain people, they’d act all bewildered or ask, “What did you do?” or suggest it must have been an isolated incident. More often those people are men, but sometimes it’s women too.
        Isolating and silencing the victims helps it go on.

      • gatorbait says:

        You’re right about that. I’ve always had the problem of being a people pleaser and getting used as a result. Predators can smell my personality from a mile away.

        Women are always made to feel insane for saying anything about assault. Like we brought it on ourselves. At none of those points in my life was I ever asking for it. It gets so old. I have huge breasts too so most men and even women think it’s okay to touch. I have told people I feel like a circus freak.

    • christy j says:

      Gatorbait, I’m so sorry to hear that you have experienced such horrific trauma and abuse at the hands of strangers and of people who should have been trustworthy. I hope you will find peace in your life and know that you are worthy and valued. You are beautiful. Thank you for sharing your story.

      • gatorbait says:

        Thank you. I really am in a dark place at the moment. I’ve grown to hate most people and fear social situations. Gatherings of more than 5 people freak me out. I don’t get why I’m getting worse. I closed myself off and rid myself of all but three very close friends I can trust and lately I don’t even want to be around them.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Gator, it’s a normal response to having been multiply victimized – how could you possibly know whom to trust after all those violations by people with whom you were supposed to feel safe? It even gets hard to trust IN trust, and victims start to doubt their own “people pickers” and view the world as a dark and scary place because for them the world HAS been a dark and scary place. Please keep trying to find the help that will help you learn to trust in a healthy way and learn to identify and avoid abusive people and situations. It sounds as if you are looking for safety. Good help will show you how to build your sense of safety in a new way that will allow you to maintain a sense of control while you rebuild your social world with people who are safe.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      jeez, gatorbait, I am so sorry people did those things to you.

      Thank you for sharing and I am sending you much strength and, hopefully, peace.

    • Cee says:

      Hello gatorbait. First of all, I’m so sorry this happened to you. If you can’t afford a therapist who specializes in trauma and assault, you could look into any universities or hospitals near you to see if they offer free or price-reduced services. My mother’s university does this so I’m sure there must be similar programmes out there. Please know you’re not alone and that none of this is your fault.

      I recently experienced sexual coercion and anal rape by my ex partner. I had never been subjected to anything like it and I feel guilty about my reaction (why didn’t I push him off? Why didn’t I kick him in the balls? Why didn’t I break up with him immediately after?) Two months after the fact, I am still shamed and angered about it.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Cee, I hope you can work through this because you do not deserve to feel any shame. Even partners – ESPECIALLY partners – can be coercive. They prey on that higher level of trust and intimacy. What you name in particular, my father did to my mother and she has felt alone with it her entire life since. I bet it happens a lot.

      • gatorbait says:

        I know the feeling. He pressed my crying face into a pillow to hide my protests and afterwards I felt so disgusting but also like I couldn’t say anything. He was my boyfriend after all. He “loved” me. I rationalized that he got in the moment and didn’t hear me but deep down I knew that was wrong. I stayed another 6 months. I felt foolish.

    • bros says:

      gatorbait, I would say, get a new therapist. the one you have/had wasn’t the one.

    • Neverwintersand says:

      Gatorbait, though i’m literally half the world away from you, i wish i was be able to hug you and tell that it will be better. Almost every other woman i know has been a victim of sexual assault or unwanted advances. But there are also many happier moments and places in the world, that we just have to remember existing. It’s can sound strange, but this little gem of fanfiction made me feel lots better after some horrible things in my past. It’s called “Post tenebras, lux”. You can find it at fanfiction.net site. Take a look! Good literature and music can be a powerful instrument in coping and processing negative emotions, and then finding peace.

    • lucy2 says:

      I’m so sorry all this happened to you.
      I agree with the recommendations to find a good PTSD therapist, and I wonder if a support group might help too. RAINN is an excellent resource for victims, if you are in the US.
      It’s not surprising you’re in a dark place right now, with all this abuse being discussed everywhere, and the general state of the world. As important as it is to stay informed and talk about this, if you are feeling overwhelmed by it, take a step back, and do something nice for yourself. Go to a movie, take a walk, find a good book to read, etc. It sounds frivolous, but sometimes you need to give yourself a break and practice some self care.

    • H says:

      You are loved and so sorry that happened to you. It wasn’t your fault. I’m awed by your courage and strength.

      This scandal has brought up memories of my own abuse and harassment, so I understand. After reading all the articles I just want to crawl into bed with my dogs and pull the covers over my head. I’ve been in therapy and on meds for over a decade for depression, it never gets easier. But, I’m there with you, gatorbait. 💙

    • Happy21 says:

      Oh honey.
      Your post brought tears to my eyes. I am so sorry that you have had to live with this/like this. As the other posters on here have said, you need a better therapist, you need to find someone who specializes in this type of thing so that you can begin to work your way out of this dark place.
      If you were here, or I there, I’d give you a big hug and help you in any way I could.
      You are strong, you are courageous.

    • Truthie says:

      Gatorbait, I am so sorry. Sending over internet love and hugs to you.

    • gatorbait says:

      Thanks everyone for the kind words. I will definitely seek out additional help. I wonder why it took so long from my last assault to actually get this low. I figured it would be sudden. I managed for a while to get on okay. Not good but okay. I guess that all of the news is bringing it out. I need to step away from the news more.

    • HoustonGrl says:

      @Gatorbait Thanks for sharing your story. That’s a very brave thing to do and my heart goes out to you. I have also been assaulted/sexually abused, in my case it was a difficult thing to stomach because I was very young. It was too difficult to speak out and even to this day I can’t completely process it. I think as more and more women speak out, we will see just how prevalent this problem is. I also don’t know any women who have not been the victim of unwanted sexual acts.

    • detritus says:

      I see you. I believe you.
      WE see you, WE believe you.

    • Grant says:

      Gatorbait, I am so sorry. Your experiences wound my soul. I am surrounding you with prayers and love and support. I hope you feel it. We stand with you.

    • I would also strongly encourage you to take a self defense class. Check with your local police department or local church and ask around, maybe you can find a free class? If all else fails google some self defense techniques and practice. You are stronger than you think. You deserve to feel safe in your own skin. Empower yourself and be ready to kick ass when necessary! I wish you peace and love. You can do it, look how far you have come. Xoxo

  5. AnnaKist says:

    God, it’s like a filthy, sickening, highly-contagious virus that no one can contain… These despicable, disrespectful, abusive, arrogant mongrels deserve to be thrashed to within an inch of their lives by the good men in our midst.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Can’t good women beat them up too? We don’t need the men to do it for us.

      • AnnaKist says:

        Oops, terribly sorry, WATP. That’s what I wanted to say, but didn’t want to appear, ahem, violent. Here’s just one of my experiences:
        My ex-BIL. My sister is 10 years older than me. At her small engagement party when I was 7, he was picking up and swinging the kids around. When he did this to me, I squirmed and felt sick, at the way he was touching my chest,pretending he was just hanging on to swing me. Over the years, I tried to keep out of his way, but he always found an opportunity to grope me, put his hand between my legs…ugh. Like many, I never said anything to anybody. When I got married, my husband asked why I was odd with cockhead, and no one else. I told him. Hubby wasn’t afraid of anyone, and said if he ever did it again, he’d take him out “fishing”… When I was 7 months pregnant with child 2, there was a bit of a bottleneck in mum’s kitchen, as lots of us had gone there for Sunday dinner. His hand went between my legs and…ugh-ugh-ugh. I turned slightly and picked up the big, sharp knife Mum had been cutting the schnitzels with, put it in front of his face and calmly said, “If you ever touch me again like you just did, I will run this knife through your guts and twist it hard, and I will not pull it out until I see the point coming out of your back.” That is how everyone found out. So, yes, I do believe I’m more than capable…

      • gatorbait says:

        @AnnaKist You’re like my wonder woman now. I wish I’d had that strength even once. I’m glad you were able to do that and I’m sorry you had to suffer that for so long.

  6. Alessio says:

    Kate Beckinsale just also came forward on Instagram with similar stories, absolutely disgusting

    • JA says:

      Was just about to post this. She shared her story on Instagram. My God, how many women were they? Harvey needs to disappear from this earth.

      • The Other Katherine says:

        JA, I’m sure there were dozens at minimum, and probably hundreds if not thousands. It’s how predators work, unless they are stopped. Relatively small numbers of serial abusers account for a shocking amount of sexual abuse. Studies done on imprisoned sex offenders who have actually admitted to their crimes, and discussed their behavior fairly openly, have shed horrifying light on this. It’s not surprising, when you think about it, but it’s hard for people who aren’t predators themselves to imagine the amount of abuse one perpetrator can commit over a lifetime.

    • ell says:

      yeah, and she mentions other men in power as well, without telling their names. all these women are being ridiculously brave, i don’t know if i could share something that painful with the world, maybe i’d be too scared. i hope all the truth comes out.

    • lucy2 says:

      Wow, Kate’s happened when she was just 17.
      And she tells of a male friend who knew her story, warned another actress, and the next day was told he’d never work for Miramax again (the person he warned told HW).

      Her statement is worth the read.

  7. Bridget says:

    Every woman in Hollywood who has spoken either “had no idea”, was forcibly propositioned and got away, or was sexually assaulted. None of the women that were coerced into saying “yes” have come forward.

  8. Nan says:

    yes, they absolutely risk vilification, if not criminalization for the “accusation”/(statement of factual coercion, due to often obvious fear on their part) and thank you again for sharing your experiences here.

  9. Vicky says:

    I was thinking…Okay..many women are coming out saying they had no clue, or they were assaulted..but I’m sure that there are hundreds of young women that would do anything to give their dream of having a career in Hollywood a boost and for them letting this big, fat, ugly monster masturbate watching them, or giving him a bj, or whatever “sexual” favor he asked for is a small price to pay next to getting a big role, or becoming a big star. So I’m absolutely sure that a lot of Hollywood stars gave in to him, and that’s the other side of the story and the big secret behind the Shhhhh…don’t talk because they were mortified this would come out and the truth would shine. That their big break came from him and because at some point in the beginning, they said yes to his demands. Imagine being one of the many “Stars” that said yes and got their break from Weinstein, how they are feeling now, the shame that they were naive, or weak, or that they tried the easy road to have a career and not because they deserved that part, but because they were the flavor of the month. What do they do now? How do they respond? Because I haven’t seen one come out and say yes, I said yes, I gave in..It will destroy their career. The sacrifice will be worth nothing. So what do they do now? Lie? Say they had no idea? Say they are shocked? This story is HUGE and it affects almost every actor-actress in Hollywood. This story is going to have a huge domino effect, like nothing we’ve ever seen before..