Many are calling for more men to speak out about Harvey Weinstein’s behavior and the sexual allegations that led to his dismissal from The Weinstein Company. Now after a weekend of tumultuous debate, George Clooney talks about his relationship with the former media mogul, the allegations that have gone public against him, and what needs to happen next. In an interview with The Daily Beast’s Marlow Stern, Clooney talks about his past with Weinstein, how he had heard about the allegations and rumors over the years, and his response then compared to now.
From the very start, the Suburbicon director claims he was unaware of the more damning allegations against Weinstein, noting that he felt a lot of the rumors seemed like they were spread to “smear the actresses and demean them” in relation to how they landed certain roles and jobs in the industry. He says he took those with a grain of salt, but the acts described in the New York Times report seem to be a different story for Clooney:
This is harassment on a very high level. And there’s an argument that everyone is complicit in it. I suppose the argument would be that it’s not just about Hollywood, but about all of us—that every time you see someone using their power and influence to take advantage of someone without power and influence and you don’t speak up, you’re complicit. And there’s no question about that.