This week, disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison. It’s something that his victims–and survivors of sexual assault everywhere–have been waiting for: actual, tangible justice for the crimes he committed. When Weinstein’s trial ended after seven weeks on Feb. 24, the court found him guilty of rape and criminal sex acts. Now, court documents released to the public shed even more light on what Weinstein was up to behind the scenes. As it turns out, even movie star Ben Affleck, who worked on several films with Weinstein, was on his notorious “red flag list.”
Ben Affleck made quite a few movies with Harvey Weinstein
Affleck and his good friend Matt Damon strutted onto the Hollywood scene in 1997’s with Good Will Hunting. The film–which would win both Affleck and Damon Oscars–was distributed by Miramax, the company Weinstein used to head. Affleck went on to appear in Shakespeare in Love, also a Weinstein-produced flick.
However, since the allegations about Weinstein surfaced, Affleck has done what he can to distance himself from the former media mogul. Variety reported:
After the Weinstein bombshells broke in The New York Times and The New Yorker, revealing Weinstein’s decades of sexual abuse, Affleck said he would be donating all residual profits from his Miramax and Weinstein Company films to charity.
Harvey Weinstein’s court documents show Ben Affleck on his ‘red flag list’
But it appears that Weinstein lost trust with Affleck at some point. His trial revealed that the movie producer kept what he referred to as a “red flag list,” and Affleck’s name was on it. Variety defined the list as such:
Prior to the publication of bombshell reports, which ignited the #MeToo movement … Weinstein kept a list of names of people he was concerned could be talking to journalists in 2017 about his sexual conduct with women.
While the document was referenced during the trial, only one name emerged. One of Weinstein’s accusers, Annabella Sciorra.
“The lead prosecutor requested that the list (which included both men and women) be provided to the jury so they could see all of the names, but the judge denied that plea,” Variety reported.
Ben Affleck was not the only Hollywood actor on Weinstein’s list
Variety’s requests for comment from Ben Affleck’s representatives went unanswered. However, the Good Will Hunting star was far from the only Hollywood name on the list.
According to recently unsealed documents, it ran about 70 names long.
The red flag list includes, Variety reported, “accusers Rose McGowan, Zelda Perkins, Lysette Anthony, and Rowena Chiu.” However, the list wasn’t just for the women who accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct. Variety continued:
Also on the list are former Weinstein Company exec Irwin Reiter; Weinstein’s former assistant and Russian Doll creator Leslye Headland; and producers Megan Ellison, Donna Gigliotti, Jason Blum and Jennifer Todd.
At one point during Weinstein’s trial, prosecutors called a private investigator hired by Weinstein to the stand. The investigator testified that the Hollywood producer himself asked him to look into the names on the red flag list. Weinstein attached the list (which included their names and other information) as a document in an email to the private investigator
“The red flags are the first to call,” Weinstein wrote in that email. However, the investigator told the courtroom that he did not go through with the task. He “was unsure if the investigation was ever completed by another detective,” as Variety pointed out.
Despite the fact that Weinstein and Affleck worked on several projects together (and appear in very chummy photographs together as recently as 2016), the producer clearly had a Ben-Affleck issue.
What else was unsealed during Weinstein’s trial?
“The list was part of roughly 1,000 pages of documents that were unsealed at the New York City criminal courthouse, ahead of Weinstein’s sentencing on Wednesday,” Variety reported. Also included in the documents were Weinstein’s old emails, which don’t show Weinstein in a great light. (Not that you’re surprised).
For example, in 2017 Weinstein’s spokeswoman sent him an email about Jennifer Aniston. The National Enquirer was planning to cover her claim of sexual assault.
“Jennifer confided to a friend that during the production of the 2005 movie Derailed Weinstein sexually assaulted her by pressing up against her back in grabbing her buttocks,” the email read.
After Weinstein read the email, he allegedly texted his spokeswoman, “Jen Aniston should be killed.”
Sounds like a man who should be behind bars for oh, 23 years, or so.
Rose McGowan, one of the first actors to speak out against Weinstein, tweeted her shock in response to the news.
“The Red Flag list,” McGowan wrote. “Wow. The magnitude of Weinstein’s power is breathtaking. I find myself even more surprised to be alive tonight.”