Since Harvey Weinstein’s firing from his own company, more and more celebrities have begun to speak out against him and the dangerous and disgusting culture that permitted and protected Weinstein’s alleged behavior. Yesterday, Meryl Streep, Judi Dench, and Glenn Close—who had all collaborated with Weinstein in the past—spoke out, along with Kate Winslet, Jessica Chastain, Emmy Rossum, Julianne Moore, Lena Dunham, and others.
But what about the men of Hollywood? While a few have spoken up, including Mark Ruffalo, Christian Slater, Michael Keaton, and Milo Ventimiglia, some of the most powerful and well-known men in Hollywood have remained mum.
In a piece published last night, the Guardian stated it reached out to 26 different actors and filmmakers who have worked with Weinstein for comment, and not one of them responded:
The Guardian reached out to representatives of actors who have starred in Weinstein films, including Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Colin Firth, Bradley Cooper, Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day-Lewis, Russell Crowe, George Clooney and Ewan McGregor, along with the directors [Quentin] Tarantino, [David O.] Russell, Ryan Coogler, Tom Hooper, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Michael Moore, Rob Marshall, Robert Pulcini, Garth Davis, Doug McGrath, John Madden, Simon Curtis, Kevin Williamson, Martin Scorsese, John Hillcoat and John Wells.
It’s hard not to imagine all 26 of these men and their PR reps sitting in a lair figuring out the best way to spin this. I suppose Matt Damon is a little bit busy right now dealing with his alleged participation in getting a 2004 story on Weinstein’s treatment of women spiked.
Lin-Miranda Manuel did get around to commenting early this morning.
And late Monday night George Clooney told the Daily Beast:
“It’s indefensible. That’s the only word you can start with,” he says. “Harvey’s admitted to it, and it’s indefensible. I’ve known Harvey for 20 years. He gave me my first big break as an actor in films on From Dusk Till Dawn, he gave me my first big break as a director with Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. We’ve had dinners, we’ve been on location together, we’ve had arguments. But I can tell you that I’ve never seen any of this behavior—ever.”
Again, just because Clooney might not have “seen” any behavior firsthand doesn’t mean shit for the women who were victimized and certainly doesn’t mean he wasn’t at least aware of the rumors that surrounded Weinstein.
Perhaps part of the delay (for those who aren’t saving Puerto Rico) is that it’s probably hard for these men who have never really been questioned to witness the downfall of one of the Boys Club’s most famous and influential members. Not only have they lost a brother, but they’ve lost a very powerful person to have in their corner—and if any of them have been more than just actively complicit in the abuse of women, perhaps they’re shitting their pants right now.
As many have pointed out, women who have been targeted and abused by the rampant misogyny in Hollywood can only do so much. It is the men who stuck up for Weinstein, remained quiet, silenced women, and benefitted from allowing these abuses to continue. Perhaps we will start to see more and more of Hollywood’s celebrated men turn on the disgraced Weinstein and stand up for their colleagues. If we’re lucky, maybe we’ll even see some acknowledge and apologize for championing such a well-known monster. I’m not getting my hopes up.