Two years after bombshell reporting on former Miramax/Weinstein Company boss Harvey Weinstein’s alleged history of sexual misconduct launched the #MeToo movement, and two months before his trial is set to begin, sources described as “friends” of the Oscar-winner say he remains defiant and is planning his comeback, CNN reports.
Weinstein’s trial on charges of predatory sexual assault, a criminal sexual act, first-degree rape, and third-degree rape is set to begin January 6, but Weinstein still insists that all allegations—which come from more than 80 women—are false, and that every encounter was consensual, the sources say.
“He feels like he is owed an apology from Hollywood,” one friend said. “I think there’s a part of him that thinks he will come out on the other side of this and be welcomed back to some version of his old life.”
Weinstein has been going through “intensive therapy sessions” but still maintains that all accusations against him are “motivated by fame,” both sources told the network.
“Harvey thinks every single woman is seeking their 15 minutes and believes these were simply affairs,” one source said. “He seems more upset that he’s been stripped of his power and less about trying to take this as an opportunity to become a changed man.”
Caitlin Dulany an actress who has accused Weinstein of sexually assaulting her during the Cannes Film Festival in 1996, is just one accuser who insists there was nothing consensual in her encounter with Weinstein.
“He used his influence and power to assault and silence us for over 20 years,” she said. “The repercussions to our lives and careers have been devastating and still continue. I have to trust that the criminal justice system will serve those of us who were the victims of his many crimes and will protect other women who may potentially be vulnerable to his predations in the future.”
One of Weinstein’s friends says that he mostly stays at home, “obsessing” over media coverage and Googling himself: “If his name [is] on it, he reads it.”
Weinstein attorney Donna Rotunno admits she has advised her client to “lay low.” Good advice, since one of his rare public appearances in New York last week led to a very public protest.
Still, Rotunno believes that Weinstein will make his return. “I think he does see life after this,” she said. “I think that’s a very positive thing. I think if I was looking at the evidence we are all looking at, I would see life after this as well. I do think I’m one of the people who has said all along if we win this case, I think that he can come back even stronger.”
But one source says that even Weinstein, in his darker moments, is not so sure.
“The way he comes off sometimes is he tries to look like he’s not [scared] and tries to act like he’s walking around, just casually, but he’s not,” they said. “He’s afraid.”
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