Producer Harvey Weinstein isn’t letting dozens of sexual assault accusations and rape cases get in a way of a night out, as evidenced by his presence at a New York City bar Wednesday night, where he was set to enjoy a night of schmoozing with young creative types. That is, until a few young creative types told him to fuck the fuck off.
Weinstein dropped by Manhattan’s Downtime Bar to attend an event called Actor’s Hour, which touts itself as, “The first speakeasy dedicated to artists. Only writers, directors, actors, musicians, and a few lucky outsiders have the privilege of gaining entry.” Accused rapists, apparently, are also awarded entry, a fact that upset at least a few people in attendance, including actor and playwright Zoe Stuckless, who described Weinstein as “surrounded by a cadre of young women and two bodyguards.”
“He wasn’t hiding,” Stuckless wrote on Facebook after the event. “He came to watch young artists be vulnerable on stage.”
Finally, comic actor Kelly Bachman decided to call out the “elephant in the room.” “I didn’t know we had to bring our own mase and rape whistles to Actor’s Hour,” Bachman said in a video of the evening. Despite receiving a smattering of applause and encouragement, she also received boos; one member of the audience told her to “shut up.” According to Stuckless, the hecklers included event organizers and bartenders.
Stuckless expected Weinstein to be kicked out of the event, or for the audience to “revolt.” “He was sitting there, allowed to laugh and clap and drink and flirt and no one was saying anything,” Stuckless wrote in the post. “The more I sat there the more furious I was at all of our inaction.”
So Stuckless did something about it. A video posted to their Facebook account captures them pointing a finger at Weinstein, decrying a lack of action.
“Nobody’s gonna say anything? Nobody’s really going to say anything?” Stuckless screamed. “I’m gonna stand four feet from a fucking rapist, and nobody’s gonna say anything?” Stuckless was then allegedly herded out of the bar by Weinstein’s bodyguards.
In a tweet, another attendee, comedian Amber Rollo, described Stuckless’s interaction with Weinstein. She said the person she witnessed shouting and crying “seemed to be the only sane person there.”
Rollo also spoke out, tweeting, “I cursed out Harvey Weinstein tonight and his goon called me a cunt.”
Gothamist reports that in a now-deleted Instagram post, Actors Hour claimed that they did not invite Weinstein and neither did anyone associated with their organization. They added: “We believe the people who spoke out were brave and justified and we fully encourage freedom of speech. We apologize wholeheartedly for the way the situation was handled.”
But it’s doubtful that those who protested Weinstein’s presence will buy this ham-handed scramble at damage control. Rollo summed up as much in a tweet: “An event that was supposed to support actors and artists invited a serial rapist who has ruined at least 87 actors’ lives and supported that monster over an actor in the room.” Sounds like a normal and cool evening all around.
Correction, 10/25, 11:21 a.m.: An earlier version of this piece misrepresented Stuckless, who identifies as non-binary.