Of course Matt Damon is in this photo. OF COURSE. Back in 2005, Lena Headey had a role in The Brothers Grimm, starring Matt Damon and Heath Ledger. Harvey Weinstein/The Weinstein Company produced the film. And that was when Lena Headey came into Harvey Weinstein’s path of perversion. Lena shared her Weinstein story on Twitter and it is full of some horrifying imagery. I am going to be haunted by her description of Weinstein’s hand gripping her arm all week. I’m going to be haunted by the thought of “what if the key card worked?” all year.
“The first time I met Harvey Weinstein was at The Venice Film Festival. The Brothers Grimm was showing there (during shooting I was subjected to endless bullying by the director Terry Gillam). At one point Harvey asked me to take a walk down to the water, I walked down with him and he stopped and made some suggestive comment, a gesture, I just laughed it off, I was genuinely shocked, I remember thinking it’s got to be a joke, I said something like…oh come on mate ?!?? It’d be like kissing my dad !! let’s go get a drink, get back to the others. I was never in any other Miramax film.”
“The next time was in LA, years later. I had always carried the thought that he’d never try anything with me again, not after I’d laughed and said never in a million years. I believed that he respected my boundary and maybe he wanted to talk about potential work. He asked me to meet for breakfast. We ate breakfast, we talked about films, film making. He asked me a few questions about the state of my love life. I shifted the conversation back to something less personal. Then he went to the loo. He came back and said, let’s go up to the room, I want to give you a script.”
“We walked to the lift and the energy shifted, my whole body went into high alert, the lift was going up and I said to Harvey, I’m not interested in anything other than work, please don’t think I got in here with you for any other reason, nothing is going to happen I said. I don’t know what possessed me to speak out at that moment, only that I had such a strong sense of don’t come near me.”
“He was silent after I spoke, furious. We got out of the lift and walked to his room. His hand was on my back, he was marching me forward, not a word, I felt completely powerless, he tried his key card and it didn’t work, then he got really angry. He walked me back to the lift, through the hotel to the valet, by grabbing and holding tightly to the back of my arm, he paid for my car and whispered in my ear, Don’t tell anyone about this, not your manager, not your agent. I got into my car and I cried.”
It’s often said by victims of acquaintance/date rape or sexual assault that they had a moment, before the assault took place, of some sixth sense pinging that something is not right, that someone is not safe, that their fight-or-flight instinct was being triggered before the danger even happened. That’s what happened to Lena in that elevator – he was about to successfully manipulate Lena into doing what he wanted, which was getting her alone in a hotel room. But her sixth sense pinged and she felt it. Think about how bad it would have gotten if she hadn’t made that speech in the elevator. Think about how bad it would have gotten if his key card worked. God, these are the real pre-Halloween horror stories, aren’t they?
(Also: tell me more about Terry Gillam being a bully. I’ve heard rumors that he’s a misogynist and a douchebag. We need some on-the-record confirmations.)
Photos courtesy of WENN, Getty.