NEW YORK (AP) – Harvey Weinstein has been fired from The Weinstein Co., effective immediately, three days after an expose detailed decades of allegations of sexual abuse against the movie mogul.
In a statement, the company’s board of directors announced his termination Sunday night, capping the swift downfall of one of Hollywood’s most powerful producers and expelling him from the company he co-created.
“In light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days, the directors of The Weinstein Company – Robert Weinstein, Lance Maerov, Richard Koenigsberg and Tarak Ben Ammar – have determined, and have informed Harvey Weinstein, that his employment with The Weinstein Company is terminated, effective immediately,” the company’s board said in a statement on Sunday night.
Weinstein had previously voluntarily taken a leave of absence following eight allegations of sexual harassment allegations uncovered in an expose by The New York Times. The board on Friday endorsed that decision and announced an investigation into the allegations.
But the Weinstein Co. board, which includes Weinstein’s brother, went further on Sunday. Weinstein, co-chairman of the film company, has also been its face and prime operator, making the Weinstein Co. an independent film leader and near annual presence at the Academy Awards.
An attorney for Weinstein didn’t immediately return messages Sunday.
A spokesperson for The Weinstein Co. declined to provide further details on Weinstein’s firing. Messages left for attorney John Keirnan of the firm Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, who had been appointed to lead an investigation, weren’t immediately returned Sunday.
Harvey Weinstein on Thursday issued a lengthy statement that acknowledged causing “a lot of pain.” He also asked for “a second chance.” But Weinstein and his lawyers have criticized The New York Times’ report in statements and interviews.
The New York Times article chronicled allegations against Weinstein from film star Ashley Judd and former employees at both The Weinstein Co. and Weinstein’s former company, Miramax.
“We are confident in the accuracy of our reporting,” said a New York Times spokesperson in a statement. “Mr. Weinstein was aware and able to respond to specific allegations in our story before publication. In fact, we published his response in full.”
The allegations triggered cascading chaos at the Weinstein Co. Numerous members of its all-male board have stepped down since Thursday. The prominent attorney Lisa Bloom, daughter of well-known Los Angeles women’s rights attorney Gloria Allred, on Saturday withdrew from representing Weinstein, as did another adviser, Lanny Davis.