Salma Hayek has joined dozens of women to share her story of sexual harassment. Hayek’s alleged abuser is none other than sexual predator, Harvey Weinstein.
‘I felt that by now nobody would care about my pain’
The Oscar-winning actress has spoken out about how the former movie executive harassed her repeatedly during their professional relationship in the 90s and early 00s. In an op-ed written in The New York Times, Hayek describes Weinstein as ‘my monster’, saying the harassment continued for years.
‘When so many women came forward to describe what Harvey had done to them, I had to confront my cowardice and humbly accept that my story, as important as it was to me, was nothing but a drop in an ocean of sorrow and confusion,’ writes Hayek.
‘I felt that by now nobody would care about my pain – maybe this was an effect of the many times I was told, especially by Harvey, that I was nobody.’
‘I don’t think he hated anything more than the word “no,”‘ wrote Hayek, describing the same fear, guilt and shame that survivors of abuse have to endure.. ‘Little did I know it would become my turn to say no. No to opening the door to him at all hours of the night, hotel after hotel, location after location, where he would show up unexpectedly, including one location where I was doing a movie he wasn’t even involved with’
‘No, no, no, no, no…’
Based on Salma Hayek’s magnificent and beautifully written NY Times piece, it is even more obvious that Harvey Weinstein is a monster who should spend the rest of his life in prison.
— Tony Schwartz (@tonyschwartz) December 14, 2017
Hayek goes into detail as to all the advances Weinstein repeatedly made towards her, including demanding to take a shower with her, letting him watch her take a shower, and various acts of harassment.
‘No to me taking a shower with him.
No to letting him watch me take a shower.
No to letting him give me a massage.
No to letting a naked friend of his give me a massage.
No to letting him give me oral sex.
No to my getting naked with another woman,
No, no, no, no, no…’ writes Hayek.
The incidences follow Weinstein’s M.O. with his other victims including Ashley Judd, Lupita N’Yongo, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Rose McGowan.
— Rachael Rayzari (@rachyrayzor) December 14, 2017
Hayek, who produced and started in the biopic of artist Frieda Kahlo, brought the film Frieda to Miramax, one of Weinstein’s empires.
‘I was so excited to work with him and that company. In my naïveté, I thought my dream had come true. He had validated the last 14 years of my life. He had taken a chance on me – a nobody. He had said yes,’ writes Hayek on her experience with getting to collaborate with one of Hollywood’s finest.
Weinstein then went on to abuse and harass Hayek whilst becoming increasingly impossible to work with, according to the actress. Weinstein was adamant about script rewrites, demanding more funding, and pressured Hayek into doing a gratuitous, full frontal nudity sex scene.
Hayek agreed. She was deeply invested in the film, and so wanted to ensure Weinstein was on board because of his influence, but had a nervous breakdown whilst shooting the scene.
‘My body began to shake uncontrollably, my breath was short and I began to cry and cry, unable to stop,’ says Hayek. ‘It was not because I would be naked with another woman,’ she wrote. ‘It was because I would be naked with her for Harvey Weinstein.’
‘I will kill you, don’t think I can’t.’
This Salma Hayek op ed is actually killing me. Frida was a beautiful and successful film. Imagine if she'd had a positive, supportive experience while producing it. Imagine what else she could have made. Films she could have directed, roles she could have demanded.
— Brittany Luse (@bmluse) December 13, 2017
‘The range of his persuasion tactics went from sweet-talking me to that one time when, in an attack of fury, he said the terrifying words, “I will kill you, don’t think I can’t.”’ writes Hayek.
She goes on to detail that the film industry stopped taking women seriously a long time ago, making men like Weinstein the only opportunity to gain access to the narratives they want to tell.
‘Why do so many of us, as female artists, have to go to war to tell our stories when we have so much to offer? Why do we have to fight tooth and nail to maintain our dignity?’ Hayek questions.
Weinstein responds to Hayek’s op-ed
Harvey Weinstein's representation just released the most insanely tone-deaf statement on Salma Hayek's op-ed ever. It's too gross to even share.
— Marlow Stern (@MarlowNYC) December 14, 2017
And cue the victim-blaming from Weinstein’s representatives. The disgraced mogul claims he has a very different side to the story.
In a statement released on Wednesday, Weinstein claims ‘All of the sexual allegations as portrayed by Salma are not accurate and others who witnessed the events have a different account of what transpired,’
The statement dismissed any sexual misconduct ‘Mr. Weinstein does not recall pressuring Salma to do a gratuitous sex scene with a female co-star and he was not there for the filming,’ read the statement.
Despite this, Hayek’s statement aligns itself with the countless survivors Weinstein has abused. The actress hopes telling her story will encourage survivors to feel less alone, maybe even compelled to share theirs.
Thank you @salmahayek for speaking you very painful truth. It is incredibly brave of you to share and push past your own pain to shed light and keep us all moving towards world in which the stories of women are held in equal value to those of men. https://t.co/8pl8d0LJvF
— Stephanie Beatriz (@iamstephbeatz) December 14, 2017
‘I am grateful for everyone who is listening to our experiences. I hope that adding my voice to the chorus of those who are finally speaking out will shed light on why it is so difficult, and why so many of us have waited so long. Men sexually harassed because they could. Women are talking today because, in this new era, we finally can.’
Sexual violence in all its forms is never okay and it’s NEVER your fault.
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