After pleading not guilty to a new charge of forcible sexual act in the first degree Monday morning in New York, which could leave him behind bars for life—his third indictment of sexual assault in a month and a half—Harvey Weinstein has spoken to the press. In an interview with columnist Taki Theodoracopulos, who, according to Deadline, sympathizes with the alleged rapist, the disgraced producer is quoted as telling The Spectator magazine:
“You were born rich and privileged and you were handsome. I was born poor, ugly, Jewish and had to fight all my life to get somewhere. You got lotsa girls, no girl looked at me until I made it big in Hollywood. Yes, I did offer them acting jobs in exchange for sex, but so did and still does everyone. But I never, ever forced myself on a single woman.”
Call me naïve or stupid, but in a funny way I believe him. I’ve seen Harvey in action during my annual Christmas party, the one I throw every year in New York with Michael Mailer. He hits on every young woman but in a naïve way. “Will you give me your address and I’ll make you a star,” is the theme of the pickup. Some say yes, some say no. His reaction was always the same. Smile and laugh and hit on the next one.
However! As soon as the piece started to pick up traction, Weinstein’s attorney, Benjamin Brafman, who Theodoracopulos claims was present during the conversation, told TMZ his client was misquoted:
“Harvey and Taki [the reporter] did not discuss the case, nor would I allow him to. They talked about old Hollywood and the contrast to European culture and I think Taki sees Harvey in that older light. Mr. Weinstein never said anything about trading movie roles for sexual favors.”
In response, Theodoracopulos offered the following statement:
“I believe that I may have misrepresented Harvey Weinstein’s conversation with me. It was my mistake.”
As you may recall, Weinstein is currently out on $1 million bail after pleading not guilty to two charges of rape and sexual assault in June. He’s next expected in court in New York on September 12. London’s Metropolitan Police and Los Angeles are also currently investigating accusations of sexual assault against Weinstein in those cities.