When Gwyneth Paltrow was 22 years old, she got a role that would take her from actress to star: The film producer Harvey Weinstein hired her for the lead in the Jane Austen adaptation “Emma.” Before shooting began, he summoned her to his suite at the Peninsula Beverly Hills hotel for a work meeting that began uneventfully, a New York Times investigation reveals.
It ended with Mr. Weinstein placing his hands on her and suggesting they head to the bedroom for massages, she said.
“I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” she said in an interview, publicly disclosing that she was sexually harassed by the man who ignited her career and later helped her win an Academy Award.
She refused his advances, she said, and confided in Brad Pitt, her boyfriend at the time. Mr. Pitt confronted Mr. Weinstein, and soon after, the producer warned her not to tell anyone else about his come-on. “I thought he was going to fire me,” she said.
Rosanna Arquette, a star of “Pulp Fiction,” has a similar account of Mr. Weinstein’s behavior, as does Judith Godrèche, a leading French actress. So does Angelina Jolie, who said that during the release of “Playing by Heart” in the late 1990s, he made unwanted advances on her in a hotel room, which she rejected.
“I had a bad experience with Harvey Weinstein in my youth, and as a result, chose never to work with him again and warn others when they did,” Ms. Jolie said in an email. “This behavior towards women in any field, any country is unacceptable.”