Brad Pitt’s decision to work with Harvey Weinstein speaks volumes
06th Sep 2021
Still embroiled in a very nasty custody battle, Angelina Jolie’s recent comments about Brad Pitt do little to redeem him in our eyes.
Opening up about what it was like when her then-husband Brad Pitt worked with Harvey Weinstein – after she had already spoken out about receiving unwanted advances from him in a hotel room – Jolie admitted that she definitely found the experience difficult to deal with.
Hollywood’s golden couple
According to a new profile on the actress that recently appeared in The Guardian, she and Brad were “Hollywood’s golden couple; so famous that they had a portmanteau moniker, Brangelina”. Both accomplished actors, they had several prestigious awards between them and were amongst two of the highest-paid stars in the film business.
As the article points out though, the duo became known for more than just their drop-dead good looks and on-screen talent. “Brangelina also became a byword for celebrity altruism and consciousness-raising. Pitt accompanied Jolie on many of her UNHCR trips, they opened schools in war-torn countries, and three of their six children were adopted from countries brutalised by conflict and poverty.” We’re always urged to lead by example, and together they did.
Their relationship has since been tainted though and now the media coverage revolves around the bitter custody battle that ensued their not-so-amicable divorce in 2019. Things go beyond being just a lover’s spat though and Jolie filed new court documents against her ex-husband earlier this year, claiming incidents of domestic violence against her and their children.
Still embroiled in the legal side of things, neither party has spoken out on the situation, though Jolie did touch on how Pitt working with Harvey Weinstein affected their relationship later in the same Guardian profile.
The Weinstein connection
One of many famous women to come forward with allegations against the infamous film producer, she said that he made unwanted advances on her in a hotel room in the late 1990s. Barely legal, Angelina was 21 years of age at the time and had been hired by Weinstein’s company Miramax film for a role in the movie Playing By Heart.
“I had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein in my youth, and as a result, chose never to work with him again and warn others when they did,” she wrote in an email back in 2017. “This behaviour towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable.”
Speaking about the incident again, Jolie commented that women often play down an assault if they manage to escape – as she herself did at the time. “If you get yourself out of the room, you think, ‘he attempted but didn’t’, right? The truth is that the attempt and the experience of the attempt is an assault.” Agreeing that it was “an abuse of rights”, she continued to say, “It was beyond a pass, it was something I had to escape.”
“I stayed away and warned people about him. I remember telling Jonny, my first husband, who was great about it, to spread the word to other guys – don’t let girls go alone with him. I was asked to do The Aviator, but I said no because he was involved. I never associated or worked with him again. It was hard for me when Brad did.”
Collaborating with Weinstein two separate times while they were together, Brad starred in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds (co-produced by the Weinstein Company), also later approaching the convicted rapist to work as a producer on the noir thriller Killing Them Softly, which the Weinstein Company distributed in 2012. “We fought about it,” she confessed. “Of course it hurt.”
Weinstein, who is currently serving a 23-year jail sentence for rape and sexual assault, maintains that he never assaulted Jolie. “THERE WAS NEVER an assault, and NEVER an attempt to assault,” he said in a statement to TMZ via his assistant. “It is brazenly untrue and clickbait publicity,” the statement continued. “You’re Angelina Jolie, every male and female in the world, I’m sure, shows interest in you. Is the whole world assaulting you?”
Friend or foe?
While Brad’s involvement with Weinstein was ultimately one of the issues that led to his divorce from Jolie, he was aware of the media mogul’s tendencies to prey on women in the industry long before getting together with Angelina. In fact, it was Gwyneth Paltrow, a former girlfriend, who first told him Weinstein was no good. Cast as the lead in the Jane Austen adaptation of Emma, she was asked to meet with him at his suite at the Peninsula Beverly Hills hotel for a work meeting prior to filming. That meeting ended with Weinstein placing his hands on her and suggesting that they head to the bedroom for massages.
Terrified of being fired, she refused his advances and went to Pitt – her then-boyfriend. Confiding in him what had happened, he reportedly confronted Weinstein about the incident who in turn warned Paltrow not to tell anyone else about it.
How then could Brad justify working with Weinstein? It all seems a little hypocritical, especially given the fact that he publicly disavowed him in an interview with CNN two years ago. Not only that, but Pitt is also currently producing a film on the New York Times’ investigation of Weinstein titled She Said. A dramatic retelling of the sexual harassment investigation that sparked the #MeToo movement, the film is due for release next year… but it does appear that Pitt’s stance on Weinstein varies in line with whether it can benefit his career/ finances or not…
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