Disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein hit back at his detractors over the weekend, bragging about his work to advance women in the film industry and complaining that he feels “like the forgotten man” as his self-proclaimed achievements have been overshadowed by multiple rape allegations.
“I made more movies directed by women and about women than any filmmaker, and I’m talking about 30 years ago. I’m not talking about now when it’s vogue. I did it first! I pioneered it,” he told The New York Post from his hospital room at New York-Presbyterian Hospital in an interview published on Sunday. “My work has been forgotten.”
“I want this city to recognize who I was instead of what I’ve become,” he said.
Weinstein, who produced numerous award-winning films with A-list celebrities like Quentin Tarantino through his now-defunct studio The Weinstein Company, has been accused of rape and sexual assault by numerous women. It was recently reported that Weinstein and his former film studio’s board have reached a tentative $25 million settlement that would end nearly every sexual misconduct lawsuit brought against him and his company.
More than 30 actresses and former Weinstein employees, who have sued the movie mogul for allegations ranging from sexual misconduct to rape, have agreed to the deal, according to the lawyers.
Weinstein is scheduled to be tried on rape and sexual assault charges on January 6. His bail was increased from $1 million to $5 million last Wednesday after he allegedly mishandled his electronic ankle monitor.
He has pleaded not guilty to charges that he raped a woman in a Manhattan hotel room in 2013 and performed a forcible sex act on a different woman in 2006.
Speaking from his hospital room following surgery related to a recent car accident, Weinstein told the Post that he only granted the interview to show that he wasn’t playing up his injuries.
Boasting about his work on behalf of female actors, he told the New York tabloid that Gwyneth Paltrow, who has accused him of sexual assault, “in 2003 got $10 million to make a movie called ‘View from the Top.'”
“She was the highest-paid female actor in an independent film. Higher paid than all the men,” he said, going on to describe his efforts to promote trans-positive films and asserting that his “was a company that took social issues and tackled them.”
“I made a success out of myself. I had no money, and I built quite an empire with Miramax and decided to give back,” he said.
Last month, A New York judge rejected Weinstein’s bid to throw out the most serious charges in his sexual assault case, clearing the way for prosecutors to bolster their case with testimony from actress Anabella Sciorra, who says Weinstein raped her in 1993 or 1994. It also left open the possibility of a life sentence if he is convicted at his trial.