Now Streaming: ‘Weinstein’ examines the crimes of predatory producer
By Pat Mullen
Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein was finally indicted yesterday by a Grand Jury on charges including rape in the first and third degrees. It’s now been eight months since the news broke that the Hollywood producer who brought American independent film to a new level in the early 1990s with Miramax (and eventually The Weinstein Company in 2005) built his success with a pervasive network of sexual assault and harassment against actresses and colleagues. The charges come after Weinstein turned himself in to authorities last Friday.
Hollywood is still trying to make sense of the toxic culture to which it has turned a blind eye for years and a new CBC doc looks directly at the Weinstein case to ask these questions. Weinstein features firsthand accounts with Weinstein accusers Jessica Barth (Ted) and Sean Young (Blade Runner), who detail the producer’s predatory conduct—and abuse of power when they rebuffed his gross conduct. (Young’s account, some of which is embedded below, is particularly troubling.) Weinstein obviously doesn’t appear in the doc, but the Passionate Eye production features written denials of the allegations from his team.
Weinstein isn’t the first doc to look at the downfall of the mogul and the social movement it precipitated. Barry Avrich recently debuted The Reckoning: Hollywood’s Worst Kept Secret at Hot Docs, which looks at the full scope of the case and interviews a few of the same parties, like former Miramax employee Zelda Perkins who broke her silence enforced by a non-disclosure agreement and came forward with further evidence of Weinstein’s crimes. Weinstein might not be the first doc on the producer’s crimes and it certainly won’t be the last, but, for now, it’s the first to stream for free.