After Ashley Judd alleged that Harvey Weinstein had sexually harassed her, he released a photograph of the two of them together in 1997 to prove that they got along well. Now, Judd is reacting to Weinstein using that photo as evidence that nothing happened between them.
Judd was interviewed on Good Morning America on Thursday, and about halfway through the conversation, Diane Sawyer noted that Harvey Weinstein had released a photograph of himself with Ashley Judd at the 1997 Vanity Fair Oscars party. This is the same photograph Weinstein previously provided to The New York Post.
“He’s put out this picture,” Sawyer said. “He said this shows that you were friends, that you were fine, that he even tried to fix you up with his brother, or did fix you up with his brother. So, you were friends.”
When Sawyer showed Judd the photo, her immediate reaction was, “Ick.” Judd says this idea that they were friends or got along well back then is completely untrue.
“No,” she said. “That’s deny, attack, reverse the order of offender and victim.”
Judd then provided Sawyer with a different photo from the same Vanity Fair Oscars party in which she looks much more uncomfortable, explaining that she tried to avoid Weinstein that night.
“I hoped I wouldn’t pass him,” she said. “But I did, and he obviously grabbed my hand. It’s like the look on my face is abject terror. I can see it in my eyes…It’s very gross. It’s very gross. I feel for that 28, 29 year old.”
Harvey Weinstein has denied all allegations of non-consensual sex, although he did apologize for his behavior and told The New York Post that he grew up in the 1960s and 1970s when “rules about behavior and workplaces were different.” He also told The New York Post that he feels for Ashley Judd and plans to reach out to her down the line.
“I know Ashley Judd is going through a tough time right now, I read her book [her memoir All That Is Bitter and Sweet], in which she talks about being the victim of sexual abuse and depression as a child,” Weinstein told The New York Post. “Her life story was brutal, and I have to respect her. In a year from now, I am going to reach out to her.”
When asked by Diane Sawyer if she will meet with Harvey Weinstein in a year, Ashley Judd said today, “I have no idea.” But she did offer some surprisingly forgiving words for Weinstein and said she hopes he gets help.
“What I would say to Harvey is ‘I love you and I understand that you are sick and suffering. And there is help for a guy like you, too,'” Judd said.