Harvey Weinstein: George Clooney and Matt Damon Speak out Against the ‘Predator’ Who Started Their Careers

George Clooney and Matt Damon on Good Morning America

George Clooney and Matt Damon discuss the Harvey Weinstein scandal on Good Morning America. | ABC

More and more stars are voicing their opinions on Harvey Weinstein following the sexual assault allegations. While many famous women are stepping forward to tell their heartbreaking experiences with Weinstein, so, recently, are a few men. George Clooney and Matt Damon broke their silence on the matter on Oct. 23, 2017.

Here’s what they had to say:  

1. Instead of promoting their newest film, they’re talking about Weinstein

On Monday, Damon and Clooney were on Good Morning America to talk about their latest film, Suburbicon (Clooney directed and Damon stars in the project). But the conversation quickly veered towards Weinstein and their relationships with the Miramax co-founder.

Previously, Clooney’s gone on record saying he was unaware of Weinstein’s behavior, and Damon has been accused of vouching for Weinstein (which he denies). In the interview, the two speak candidly with Michael Strahan about the scandal.

2. Weinstein helped launch Damon’s career

LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 10: Actor Matt Damon attends the Project Greenlight Season 4 Winning Film premiere "The Leisure Class" presented by Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Adaptive Studios and HBO at The Theatre at Ace Hotel on August 10, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.

Matt Damon worked with Harvey Weinstein in several films early in his career. | Angela Weiss/Getty Images

Damon worked with Weinstein on the film that launched his career, Good Will Hunting. After GWH was a hit, Damon worked with Weinstein on several more projects.

“People who worked for him were, like, ‘I’m coming to make good movies.’ Miramax was the place making great stuff in the ’90s,” said Damon.  

3. Weinstein was also instrumental in starting Clooney’s career

George Clooney arrives for screening of “Gravity.”

George Clooney also got his first big break from Harvey Weinstein. | Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Weinstein gave Clooney his first major big-screen role, and the two have worked closely throughout the years as a result.

“I’ve known Harvey for 20 years. He gave me my first big break as an actor in films on From Dusk Till Dawn, he gave me my first big break as a director with Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. We’ve had dinners, we’ve been on location together, we’ve had arguments. But I can tell you that I’ve never seen any of this behavior — ever,” Clooney told The Daily Beast

4. They say they knew he was a bully, but not a predator

George Clooney and Harvey Weinstein attend the 18th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards held at Barker Hangar on January 10, 2013 in Santa Monica, California.

George Clooney and Harvey Weinstein have worked together in the past. | Christopher Polk/Getty Images for BFCA

“You had to spend about five minutes with him to know that he was a bully,” Damon said in the interview. “He was intimidating.”

Clooney caught a glimpse of Weinstein’s true colors when he would tell the actor about the “affairs” he was having. “I didn’t really think that they were going to have affairs with Harvey, quite honestly. And clearly they didn’t. But the idea that this predator, this assaulter, was out there silencing women like that, it’s beyond infuriating,” the actor said.

5. Damon said Weinstein treated Gwyneth Paltrow ‘incredibly respectfully’

Actress Gwyneth Paltrow and Harvey Weinstein at the 50th Anniversary Gala of the National Film Theatre on October 20, 2002 at The National Film Theatre, in London

Matt Damon said he knew about Gwyneth Paltrow’s experiences with Harvey Weinstein. | Getty Images

Though Damon said he didn’t explicitly know about Weinstein’s sexual harassment allegations, he did hear about Gwyneth Paltrow’s experience with him from Ben Affleck. “I never talked to Gwyneth about it. Ben told me, but I knew that they had come to whatever agreement or understanding that they had come to, she had handled it,” Damon said. “She was the first lady of Miramax. And he treated her incredibly respectfully.”

Paltrow would argue that she was treated far less than “incredibly respectfully,” particularly in her early experiences with Weinstein.I was a kid, I was signed up, I was petrified,” she recounted in an interview.

She says she told her then-boyfriend, Brad Pitt, about Weinstein’s advances but worried he would fire her for speaking up. The producer of the film she had been working on with Weinstein warned her not to tell anyone else.

6. Clooney’s hope for the future

George Clooney in 2015

George Clooney hopes this will mark a moment of change in society. | Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

Clooney hopes the unveiling of Weinstein’s behavior will help create change.

“We hope this is a watershed moment for us as a society, where women feel safe enough to talk about this issue, feel believed,” Clooney told red carpet reporters. “If we can get to that point, we’ve actually succeeded, and this thing won’t just end up being Harvey Weinstein jokes in three months.”

7. Damon says he hopes these allegations cause ‘massive systemic change’

Matt Damon smiles and stares ahead

Matt Damon labeled Harvey Weinstein a “predator.” | Niklas Halle’n/AFP/Getty Images

“What makes something like this so horrific is that these are women and actresses who are pursuing their dreams,” Damon said. “They’re doing everything right. And suddenly they found themselves alone with a predator.”

Though sexual assault is horrific no matter who the victim is, whether she/he is pursuing her/his dreams or not, it’s good to hear Damon call Weinstein what he is: a predator.

“The fact that somebody that powerful, his career has been completely ruined, that’s a real message to anybody who would behave like this,” he went on to say.

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