Meryl Streep on sexual misconduct: 'I don't want to hear about the silence of me'
Meryl Streep has spoken out again about the allegations against Harvey Weinstein and the growing movement to combat sexual misconduct in Hollywood and beyond.
Speaking to The New York Times, Streep recalled how the Weinstein news “underlined my own sense of cluelessness” and how she “really had to think” before she responded, even as people were calling on her to do so.
“I found out about this on a Friday and went home deep into my own life,” she told the Times. And then somebody told me that on Morning Joe they were screaming that I haven’t responded yet. I don’t have a Twitter thing or – handle, whatever. And I don’t have Facebook. I really had to think. Because it really underlined my own sense of cluelessness, and also how evil, deeply evil, and duplicitous, a person he was, yet such a champion of really great work.”
“You make movies. You think you know everything about everybody. So much gossip. You don’t know anything,” she added. “People are so inscrutable on a certain level. And it’s a shock. Some of my favorite people have been brought down by this, and he’s not one of them.”
Streep, who worked with Weinstein on films like August: Osage County and The Iron Lady, released a statement on Oct. 9 — four days after the Times‘ first bombshell story about Weinstein was published — calling the allegations against him “inexcusable” and saying that she did not know about the alleged “inappropriate, coercive acts” he was accused of doing. (Weinstein has denied all allegations of non-consensual sex.)
In a subsequent statement released in December after actress Rose McGowan criticized Streep’s reaction to the Weinstein allegations, the actress said she was never “deliberately silent,” and was unaware of any wrongdoing on Weinstein’s part.
When asked by the Times what she thought of the fact that people were waiting for her to speak, Streep referenced the women closest to President Donald Trump, who has been accused by more than a dozen women of sexual harassment and assault. (Trump has denied the allegations.)
“I don’t want to hear about the silence of me,” she said. “I want to hear about the silence of Melania Trump. I want to hear from her. She has so much that’s valuable to say. And so does Ivanka. I want her to speak now.”
“In terms of Harvey, I really didn’t know,” Streep told the Times. “I did think he was having girlfriends. But when I heard rumors about actresses, I thought that that was a way of denigrating the actress and her ability to get the job. That really raised my hackles. I didn’t know that he was in any way abusing people. He never asked me to a hotel room. I don’t know how his life was conducted without people intimately knowing about it.”
Streep currently stars in The Post. Her full interview, which also includes costar Tom Hanks, can be read at The New York Times.