Journalist Ronan Farrow Discusses Arrest Of Harvey Weinstein
AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
Harvey Weinstein entered a black SUV in handcuffs to the shouts of paparazzi this morning.
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CORNISH: Unlike his red carpet past as a Hollywood studio executive, Weinstein was accompanied by New York City police officers. He was fingerprinted and booked on sexual assault charges. Last fall, Ronan Farrow of The New Yorker interviewed one of the two victims now pressing charges against Weinstein. He joins us now to talk about the investigation and more. Welcome to the program.
RONAN FARROW: Good to be here, Audie.
CORNISH: What was it like to see Harvey Weinstein doing a perp walk?
FARROW: I think for every woman in this story, this is a moment of validation that really they never expected. I had so many hard conversations with Harvey Weinstein's accusers in which they turned over not only the considerable personal sacrifice that this entailed but also the near impossibility in their minds that should they make those sacrifices, they would ever be heard, that there would ever be accountability. Again and again, women said to me, you know, what's the point? He'll just go on with his career. And clearly that hasn't happened. And I think that reflects a really significant change in the culture around this issue.
CORNISH: Weinstein is facing charges related to two separate victims. One is not named. The other is Lucia Evans, who went on the record in your story last fall with her allegation of Weinstein assaulting her in his business office in New York way back in 2004. So fast forward to now. What do you know about her decision to actually move towards pressing charges?
FARROW: Lucia Evans, like every woman in my stories about Harvey Weinstein, faced an incredibly difficult decision in putting her name in the press. And she did that to support other women. Likewise, she has now faced yet another layer of life-altering decisions because the day after the publication of that New Yorker story, officers from the NYPD began to entreat her to tell her story in court, and that means potentially years of her being torn to shreds on the stand. And after months and months of sleepless nights, she has decided to open herself up to that possibility because, as she told me, she couldn't pass up a chance to stand up for other women.
CORNISH: And who's representing her legally?
FARROW: She's represented by an attorney named Carrie Goldberg, who specializes in sexual violence and stalking. She's obviously going up against a very powerful legal team on Harvey Weinstein's end.
CORNISH: What do you know about Harvey Weinstein's legal team? All right, they helped negotiate his turning himself in. I understand he'll be out on bail and wearing an electronic monitor. In the past, he's denied all allegations essentially.
FARROW: He has in the past throughout our stories on this subject denied all allegations of nonconsensual sex. He hasn't denied, you know, all the parts of all the fact patterns presented by these women. But he has said that essentially in all these cases - we're now talking about dozens of allegations of assault and other forms of misconduct. You know, he says that those were all consensual.
CORNISH: Weinstein was photographed carrying a handful of books with him on the way to turning himself in, including a book about the Broadway greats Rodgers and Hammerstein and the biography of the...
FARROW: I saw that.
CORNISH: ...Late director Elliot Kazan. And he knows the power of an image, right? So what is the message being sent in these choices?
FARROW: You know, I try to avoid speculating as to Harvey Weinstein's state of mind. I think you're right. He is someone who knows narrative and imagery. And, you know, he's clearly sending specific messages there. You know, and Kazan was a controversial figure and, you know, was one of the people who continues to get a lot of ire for naming names during the McCarthy era. So, you know, I'll leave it to others to put together what he's trying to say there.
CORNISH: Ronan Farrow is a contributing writer to The New Yorker. Thank you for speaking with ALL THINGS CONSIDERED.
FARROW: Pleasure to be here, Audie. Thank you.
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