Lena Headey reveals uncomfortable encounter with Harvey Weinstein
On Tuesday, Game of Thrones actress Lena Headey joined the growing chorus of women to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct, recounting two harrowing encounters with the defamed Hollywood producer in a series of tweets.
During their first meeting, which, according to Headey, was at a screening of The Brothers Grimm at the Venice Film Festival (the film would have played there in 2005), Weinstein allegedly took her aside for a walk, where she says he attempted to come on to her.
“I just laughed it off, I was genuinely shocked,” Headey recalled in the tweets. “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!’”
After that encounter, Headey claims, she never appeared in another Miramax film.
Her next meeting with Weinstein was years later in Los Angeles, when the infamous former head of the Weinstein Company insisted that the two meet for breakfast to discuss potential work.
After Weinstein suggested that they head to his hotel room, Headey says, she could immediately feel that the “energy [had] 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.
According to Headey, the remarks left Weinstein “silent” and “furious”:
We got out of the lift and walked to his room. His hand was on my back, 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.
Since the New York Times published a bombshell report on the sexual assault allegations against Weinstein and the years-long coverup of their existence by his camp, dozens of women have been emboldened to come forward with their own claims of sexual misconduct.
Celebrities including Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie, Rosanna Arquette and Rose McGowan have all publicly accused Weinstein of predatory behavior, and The New Yorker also published a months-long investigation by Ronan Farrow detailing the stories of 13 additional women who claim to have been been harassed, assaulted or raped by Weinstein.
The report has also proven to be a watershed moment for average women to speak openly about their experiences with sexual assault and harassment, with the hashtag campaign #MeToo igniting social media with stories of abuse.