Tara Subkoff: Harvey Weinstein blacklisted me after I refused to sleep with him

LACMA 2015 Art+Film Gala honouring James Turrell And Alejandro G Inarritu, presented by Gucci

I mostly knew/know the name Tara Subkoff from her work in fashion, her friendship with Chloe Sevigny and her one-status as an It Girl of the 1990s. I honestly never thought too much about it, I just thought “oh, she’s a fashion designer” because the thing I most closely associated her with was co-founding the label Imitation of Christ (now “Imitation”). But she was and is an actress too, working consistently (but not really notably) since the ‘90s. She had a promising career at one point. Then she crossed Harvey Weinstein’s path. Subkoff told her story to Variety:

Actress Tara Subkoff has opened up about her experience with Harvey Weinstein, alleging the producer sexually harassed her in the 1990s when she was up for a part in one of his movies.

“That night I was offered the role, and I went out to a premiere after party that Harvey Weinstein was also at,” she told Variety. “He motioned for me to come over to him, and then grabbed me to sit me on his lap. I was so surprised and shocked I couldn’t stop laughing because it was so awkward. But then I could feel that he had an erection. I got quiet, but got off his lap quickly. He then asked me to come outside with him and other things I don’t want to share, but it was implied that if I did not comply with doing what he asked me to do that I would not get the role that I had already been informally offered. I laughed in his face as I was in shock and so uncomfortable. I left the party right after that.”

Subkoff made her film debut in 1994’s thriller “When the Bough Breaks,” and appeared in the 1997 Jack Nicholson comedy “As Good as It Gets,” the 1997 “All Over Me,” and the 1998 Whit Stillman film “The Last Days of Disco.” Subkoff said after denying Weinstein’s advances that night, she was stripped of the informally offered part and blacklisted from acting in Hollywood.

“My reputation was ruined by false gossip, and I was called ‘too difficult to work with,’” she said. “It became impossible for me to get work as an actress after this, so I then had to start a new career path and started Imitation of Christ, a fashion and art label.

In 2015, Subkoff stepped back into entertainment and made her directorial debut with the feature film “#Horror.”

“The Weinstein company executives snuck into a cast and crew screening of my film and told me they loved it,” she recalled. “Then they took it to Harvey, who then refused to watch it but then bad-mouthed it to everyone all over Cannes.”

Still, the movie was picked up for distribution by IFC Midnight. “[IFC was] so supportive of me and the movie, even though Harvey tried to ruin any potential success it could have had,” she said. “It is challenging enough to get work in Hollywood as a female, let alone being a female filmmaker producer/director. And when people attempt to ruin your reputation on top of that, it makes it next to impossible.”

Subkoff said she hopes the growing list of women coming forward with their stories will set a precedent for how women are treated in all places of work. “I have a 17 month old daughter, and I hope she never has a story like this to share.”

Though she has never shared her story before, Subkoff said she opened up about her experience to demonstrate how “powerful men abusing their power can affect not only a few careers, but all of ours,” adding, “I had it affect and ruin my career as an actress. And then almost twenty years later it almost affected my first feature film I wrote directed and produced getting distribution. That refusing to comply with one powerful man’s sexual advances could not only ruin my first career as an actress, but almost twenty years later also had the power to affect my first and only feature film to get distribution is so important to show how the abuse of power by the patriarchy is affecting all female artists everywhere.”

[From Variety]

This is what I keep saying: this week, I’m having a series of revelations about just how many women’s careers were hampered, diffused, blacklisted and destroyed by Harvey Weinstein’s enormous reach. It’s one thing to wonder “whatever happened to WhatsHerName, who did she piss off?” It’s quite another for the confirmations to come hard and fast, and to realize the scope of the problem. Harvey Weinstein didn’t just sexually harass, abuse and assault women and destroy their lives THAT way. He also set about destroying women financially and professionally. It’s monstrous. It’s sickening.

Chloe Sevigny and Tara Subkoff

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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38 Responses to “Tara Subkoff: Harvey Weinstein blacklisted me after I refused to sleep with him”

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  1. Lucy says:

    I love Tara so much , I’ve had the chance to meet her and she’s just lovely. She’s amazingly talented too, her fashion line is fantastic.
    Shes honestly one of my favourite celebrities and she’s such a badass.

  2. Claudia Remm says:

    Thank you Kaiser and he did exactly this to A. Jolie as well. I was wondering all the time, where all this hate came from. He did not fully succeed in her case, but he did a lot of damage.

    • Nick says:

      Um no. He did not do this “exact same thing” to Jolie.

      • Rose says:

        I don’t know if this they two posters are stands or not, but it was pointed out by CB and other places that Gwen, Joile and other were mostly likely victims of Harvey’s tabloid smear campaign.

        Now your comments come off very defensive you may want to take your dislike of Joile else where because this is not a situation for that they are all victims.

      • Freida says:

        What ‘hate’? Yes, HW did harasss AJ, but she never said he offered her sex in exchange for roles. Jolie already was crafting a career. She has Jon Voight as her father and used his connections to become an actress.
        Quit starting fights, and this post is not about Jolie BTW. Stop it.

    • Casey _ says:

      What do you mean? Hate she gets from some women? From the tabloids painting her as homewrecker and worse for a decade and change? He’s a pig and deserves the absolute worst, but some women (and tabloids appealing to such women) do bad all by themselves too and an awful lot of them need zero help in hating other women. Sad, but true.

      Not to say he may not have tried early on to exact revenge, but she ascended in her industry fairly quickly and it seems she’s reached the pinnacle in spite of gross slobs like him – she’s respected and admired – has been nom’d for Oscar twice, won once, is one of the most famous women in the world and her industry has honored her several times including with the herscholt Oscar.

      He probably quickly learned to leave her be.

      • Nick says:

        Your response is a contradiction to your first post. Angelina Jolie did NOT suffer at the hands of HW like this woman did. This is not about women attacking other women, its about the victims of a serial predator. Please tell me about Jolie being blackballed at any point of time in her career. Take your stanning elsewhere.

    • Freida says:

      HW never blacklisted Jolie. She always had a great career.

  3. Sky says:

    “whatever happened to WhatsHerName, who did she piss off?”

    Sadly it’s who did she refuse to sleep with. Also let’s not forget the women who said no and were trashed in the media. Harvey go to slander was page 6 and dailymail.

  4. Vanessa says:

    My question is, with Weinstein destroying so many women’s careers, coupled with the “rumors” of sexual assault (that many “claim” they didn’t know if they were true) who was then complicit in destroying these careers? And wouldn’t someone wonder why it was all these WOMEN who were on his shit list? Meaning, those he told to never work with these women, why did those people listen? Was his power that immense back then that if they had ignored him and given these women roles, would they have been destroyed too? Like, other studios? I don’t know if I’m asking my question clearly. It just seems like there are more shitty characters to be looked at that helped destroy these careers, no questions asked, despite the rumors, etc.

    • DiligentDiva says:

      Kate Beckinsale said in her IG post, that a male friend of hers warned a new actress about Harvey’s ways, and that this friend of hers got blacklisted after the actress slept with Harvey and told him she was warned. So yea I imagine his power was that large.
      Also, I imagine most other studio executives are exactly like Weinstein or they have directors whom they know won’t cast an actress unless she sleeps with him, so they probably don’t want to give an actress an opportunity if they already know she won’t sleep with them or their buddies. Everyone in the higher levels of the industry expects actors, children, men, and women no one o sleep with people in order to get ahead.Is spared from the casting couch it seems. It’s not just a problem with Weinstein it’s a problem with the entire industry in hollywood. Their mentality is f-up and wrong.
      That’s my problem with the conversation right now, too much focus on Weinstein and not enough on all of Hollywood. I’m not saying give Weinstein a free pass but can’t we acknowledge that some people have been talking about the casting couch for years now and it’s not like this problem is going away with the firing of Weinstein. Corey Feldman talked about it last year, how it applies to children. Something needs to be done. This is a bigger problem then just Weinstein.

  5. Trina Moe says:

    This is so sad, I have no words. So many women had their careers destoyed by this psycopath.
    In the same time I do wonder which actresses agreed (reluctantly) to his propositions and then had advances in their careers? They are most likely ashamed and silent now. But I feel so sorry for them and by no means think it was their real choice.
    This guy belongs in jail.

    • Sandy says:

      From my experience if she’s called a whore, trouble maker etc” she said no. If she’s a real team player and hard worker- she said yes. At least that was how the military worked. But at the end of the day the girls who say yes to these things end up way more messed up than the ones who say no and face retaliation.

  6. Squiggisbig says:

    Good for her that she was able to create another career for herself. Glad she is finally being heard.

  7. tifzlan says:

    Now we know what “too difficult to work with” truly means. The abuse Weinstein inflicted is so deep-rooted, beyond just sexual, but mentally and emotionally too. He is a monster.

  8. Salanta3 says:

    What really gets me about this story is the dates. She rejected him in the 90s. He tried to ruin her movie and her career as a new director in 2015!

    The man held a grudge for TWENTY YEARS!!! How… pathetic? obsessive? deranged?

    Do you think he was keeping a list of all the women he harassed? I mean, there must have been hundreds over the years, now the British police are investigating an incident dating back to the *80s*! Can he even remember them all?!

    So anyway, if such a list exists… can the investigators get their hands on it please??

  9. Moon says:

    He hasn’t even apologized to his victims…

  10. Sky says:

    “whatever happened to WhatsHerName, who did she piss off?” It’s more like who she did she say no to.

    Let not forget the ones who said no and were trashed in the media for years. Harvey go to slander media is Page 6 and Dailymail.

  11. Coolio says:

    It occurred to me last night as I watched Titanic that I bet that is why it took so long for Leo to get an oscar. Say what you will about his P squad and gross model shenanigans, he really is a fantastic actor. He must have rejected someone’s advances at some point in his career and he was blocked from getting an oscar. Hmmm.

  12. Sara says:

    This man is a disgusting monster.

  13. Who ARE These People? says:

    As if we need any more proof that sexual assault/abuse is about a hatred of women, not about a love of sex.

    • Jayna says:

      He had plenty of affairs that weren’t forced I’m sure. He was rich and powerful. There’s always willing women for that, even for fat, ugly men. But that bored him. It seems where he got off was the power and control and humiliation over unsuspecting younger women coming to his suite for an interview or wherever he did his gross behavior. He gets off on degrading women and moving on to the next one. I doubt he is even capable of having a normal sexual relationship that is ongoing with a woman, whether wife or mistress. He isn’t even into seducing a woman with charm. He tells them to perform sex acts for roles or else. He loves the power and control of getting a woman to do what he wants who really doesn’t want to or humiliating them by masturbating in front of them if they resist.

      Ugh. It is so sickening. I still find it so shocking how long this went on.

  14. Dolkite says:

    More people should have seen “All Over Me.”

  15. Helen Smith says:

    I completely agree Kaiser. I have wondered where many a talented young actress went too.

    Harvey calling himself a sex addict and going to rehab is a joke. Tiger Woods had a dozen women come out into the public domain but he didn’t have to trick women into sleeping with him and he didn’t ruin their lives once the relationship ended. That is the difference between someone addicted to sex like Tiger and someone like Harvey who uses sex for power and control.

    I would be shocked if Harvey didn’t have narcissistic personality disorder comorbid with antisocial personality disorder. Really shocked.

    One comment that stuck with me today was someone on the Daily Mail’s comment board wrote that poor people go to jail, rich people go to rehab which is where Harvey is right now.

  16. alex says:

    All Over Me is a great movie.