Yesterday Salma Hayek wrote a piece in the New York Times where she calls Harvey Weinstein her “monster” and includes all the details we’ve come to expect by now. The scripted first 15 plays that every powerful entertainment business creep uses as the basis of his sexual harassment game plan. Showing up at her hotel room at all hours. Wanting her to watch him take a shower. Wanting her to massage him. Him wanting to massage her. Him wanting her to watch him get a massage from a friend. Wanting to watch her get a massage from a friend. Him wanting to massage a friend while taking a shower while Salma watches, etc, etc.
All of this while Weinstein was financing Hayek’s 2002 pet project Frida, which I’ve personally never seen because it it would violate my rule that says I never see a movie unless it includes helicopters (every action movie has a helicopter), lasers or swords. She goes onto say that Weinstein hated the fact she wore a unibrow and wanted her to get rid of it, then refused to let her finish the film unless she threw in a lesbian sex scene between Salma and Ashley Judd.
He would let me finish the film if I agreed to do a sex scene with another woman. And he demanded full-frontal nudity. He had been constantly asking for more skin, for more sex. Once before, Julie Taymor got him to settle for a tango ending in a kiss. … So I agreed to do the senseless scene. I arrived on the set the day we were to shoot the scene that I believed would save the movie. And for the first and last time in my career, I had a nervous breakdown: My body began to shake uncontrollably, my breath was short and I began to cry and cry, unable to stop, as if I were throwing up tears.
And for the first time since all this started, Weinstein has fired back:
Mr. Weinstein does not recall pressuring Salma to do a gratuitous sex scene with a female costar and he was not there for the filming. However, that was part of the story, as Frida Kahlo was bisexual and the more significant sex scene in the movie was choreographed by Ms. Hayek with Geoffrey Rush. The original uni-brow used was an issue because it diverted attention from the performances.
First of all, I think it speaks volumes about what a Hall of Fame leech this guy is that he doesn’t bother denying all the stuff about showers and massages and watching shower-massages. Second, while I never thought these words would ever be coming out of my keyboard, I’m with Harvey Weinstein on this. Meaning I’m with him on the lesbian makeout scene and the unibrow. He belongs behind bars for the rest of it. But on the narrow issues of whether a movie about a bisexual starring lava hot actresses like early 2000s era Salma Hayek and Ashley Judd, you’re damned right you include a make out scene and try to make them both look as good as possible.
It’s just good business. I’m sorry, Salma. Your little vanity project still had to make money. There’s a limited audience for a biopic about a Mexican painter with eyebrows like Joe Flacco. There is a much bigger audience for watching you and Ashley make out. His instincts were correct. If you expect a producer to hand you millions to put your vision on screen, you’ve got to give him something he can turn a profit with. And if you’d actually put in the full frontal sex scene he originally asked for, copies of Frida would have been flying off the shelves of Blockbuster back in the day instead of being nothing more than some Oscar nom you once got that no one remembers. Harvey Weinstein is a Grade A scumbag. But a Grade A scumbag who knew what the public wanted.