According to Nyong’o, the wave of women coming forward with damning allegations against the disgraced Hollywood luminary caused her to revisit her 2011 experience with Weinstein. It was an encounter that she previously attempted to not have at front of mind:
“I had felt very much alone when these things happened, and I had blamed myself for a lot of it, quite like many of the other women who have shared their stories…But now that this is being discussed openly, I have not been able to avoid the memories resurfacing. I have felt sick in the pit of my stomach. I have felt such a flare of rage that the experience I recount below was not a unique incident with me, but rather part of a sinister pattern of behavior.”
Nyong’o lays out the meeting with Weinstein in Berlin from 2011, back when she was still a student at the Yale School of Drama. Weinstein would eventually invite her over to a private screening at his Westport, Connecticut home, where Nyong’o recalls Weinstein attempted to bully her into drinking a vodka soda. Fifteen minutes into the screening of the film, Weinstein attempted to include a massage into the proceedings and the tale begins to sound similar to other allegations against the disgraced mogul.
“I didn’t quite know how to process the massage incident. I reasoned that it had been inappropriate and uncalled-for, but not overtly sexual,” she explained. “I was entering into a business where the intimate is often professional and so the lines are blurred. I was in an educational program where I was giving massages to my classmates and colleagues every day. Though the incident with Harvey had made me uncomfortable, I was able to explain and justify it to myself, and shelve it as an awkward moment.”
It’s a detailed, candid and sometimes frustrating read as Nyong’o recalls what she experienced and the impact the interactions have had on her. Nyong’o says she’s speaking up to “contribute to the end of the conspiracy of silence,” a desire that many of her colleagues have been emphatic about sharing.
(Via New York Times)