Harvey Weinstein Cites JAY-Z, NRA in Bizarre Statement Following Assault Allegations
"Jay Z wrote in 4:44 'I'm not the man I thought I was and I better be that man for my children.' The same is true for me."
After an explosive exposé was published Thursday accusing Harvey Weinstein of decades of sexual harassment and questionable behavior towards women, The New York Times has released the Hollywood mogul's response in its entirety.
In a statement to the Times, Weinstein stated, "I came of age in the 60’s and 70’s, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different. That was the culture then. I have since learned it’s not an excuse, in the office - or out of it. To anyone."
Ashley Judd was one of the women who came forward in the Times' story, detailing a meeting in which she arrived to find Weinstein in only a bathrobe. He then asked her to watch him shower. She told the Times that it was vital women like her come forward now. “Women have been talking about Harvey amongst ourselves for a long time, and it’s simply beyond time to have the conversation publicly.”
Multiple women remembered similar stories of sexual harassment in hotels throughout the years.
"I so respect all women and regret what happened," Weinstein's response on Thursday continues. "I hope that my actions will speak louder than words and that one day we will all be able to earn their trust and sit down together with Lisa to learn more. Jay Z wrote in 4:44 'I'm not the man I thought I was and I better be that man for my children.' The same is true for me."
The Times reported that Weinstein "has reached at least eight settlements with women," citing two unnamed sources. Weinstein hired attorneys and consultants leading up the publication of the Times' expose to combat the story, including Lisa Bloom and Charles Harder, who represented Hulk Hogan in his battle against Gawker.
Weinstein initially told the reporters that he has chosen to take a leave of absence to "deal with this issue head on."
Attorney Bloom told the Times that Weinstein is "an old dinosaur learning new ways," who uses "words and behaviors can be perceived as inappropriate, even intimidating.”
Read his full statement to The New York Times below.
I came of age in the 60’s and 70’s, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different. That was the culture then.
I have since learned it’s not an excuse, in the office - or out of it. To anyone.
I realized some time ago that I needed to be a better person and my interactions with the people I work with have changed.
I appreciate the way I’ve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it.
Though I’m trying to do better, I know I have a long way to go. That is my commitment. My journey now will be to learn about myself and conquer my demons. Over the last year I've asked Lisa Bloom to tutor me and she's put together a team of people. I've brought on therapists and I plan to take a leave of absence from my company and to deal with this issue head on. I so respect all women and regret what happened. I hope that my actions will speak louder than words and that one day we will all be able to earn their trust and sit down together with Lisa to learn more. Jay Z wrote in 4:44 "I'm not the man I thought I was and I better be that man for my children." The same is true for me. I want a second chance in the community but I know I've got work to do to earn it. I have goals that are now priorities. Trust me, this isn't an overnight process. I've been trying to do this for 10 years and this is a wake-up call. I cannot be more remorseful about the people I hurt and I plan to do right by all of them.
I am going to need a place to channel that anger so I've decided that I'm going to give the NRA my full attention. I hope Wayne LaPierre will enjoy his retirement party. I'm going to do it at the same place I had my Bar Mitzvah. I'm making a movie about our President, perhaps we can make it a joint retirement party. One year ago, I began organizing a $5 million foundation to give scholarships to women directors at USC. While this might seem coincidental, it has been in the works for a year. It will be named after my mom and I won't disappoint her.
This story was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.