Colin Firth calls Harvey Weinstein ‘a frightening man to stand up to’

Star of The Kings Speech, a Weinstein film, tells the Guardian: Its with a feeling of nausea that I read “whats going on” while I was benefiting

Actor Colin Firth is the latest celebrity to condemn embattled movie producer Harvey Weinstein, saying in a statement to the Guardian that he” was a powerful and frightening man to stand up to” and that he supported the women accusing the movie mogul of sexual harassment.

” It’s with a feeling of nausea that I read “whats going on” while I was benefiting from Harvey Weinstein’s support. He was a powerful and frightening man to stand up to. It must have been terrifying for these women to step up and call him out. And horrifying be applied to that kind of harassment. I applaud their courage ,” he said in a statement sent on Tuesday.

” By coming forward they’ve provided a jolting wake up throughout our industry. I hope it’s going to be a help to others, both in our own industry and elsewhere .”

Firth is the latest Hollywood figure to blame the powerful cinema producer less than a week after the New York Times published an investigation alleging unwanted physical contact and harassment spanning several decades. Weinstein and his lawyers have said he denies many of the allegations and has threatened to sue the newspaper.

The scandal deepened on Tuesday when three women accused Weinstein of rape in an article in the New Yorker, accusations he” unequivocally denied” through a spokeswoman.

Several women have continued to come forward with new accusations in recent days, including model Zoe Brock and actor Romola Garai in interviews with the Guardian. Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie and other high-profile performers also alleged they were harassed by Weinstein in a second New York Times piece published on Tuesday.

Colin Firth in The King’s Speech in 2010. Photograph: Uk Film Co/ Rex/ Shutterstock

Some have urged men in Hollywood to speak out in support of his accusers, denouncing performers and directors with close ties to Weinstein for remaining silent while many girls have released forceful statements about the allegations. Patricia Arquette, Amber Tamblyn, Olivia Munn, Lena Dunham, Brie Larson, Constance Wu, Rosie O’Donnell, America Ferrera, Jessica Chastain and other women tweeted about Weinstein soon after the first investigative piece was published last week.

On Monday, the Guardian contacted more than 20 male performers and directors who have worked with the movie mogul over the years, some of whom have projects with Weinstein. All initially declined to comment or did not respond to inquiries.

Since then, George Clooney, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Affleck and others have responded with statements supporting the alleged victims. Director Paul Feig exhorted other humen to speak out in a recent interview with the Guardian.

Firth starred in The King’s Speech, a Weinstein-produced film that was nominated for 12 Oscars and won best image. The British performer also won best performer for his role as King George VI in the film directed against Tom Hooper.

A representative said Firth was on set and unavailable for an interview.

If you have narratives to share about Weinstein or sex misconduct in Hollywood, contact sam.levin @theguardian. com

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