Filmmaker and actor Kevin Smith was well acquainted with the disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. But after displaying behavior regarding one of his movies Smith found disgusting, the Clerks director had enough of Weinstein’s attitude. And he let the producer know it.
Kevin Smith once shared Harvey Weinstein owed him money for years
As is the case with some actors and filmmakers, Smith had a professional relationship with Weinstein before being exposed for his behavior towards women. But even when he and Weinstein first started working together, there were signs of trouble. Weinstein was well-known for occasionally not paying celebrities what they were owed. Smith encountered this kind of treatment after Weinstein bought his movie Clerks.
“This much I know. They bought Clerks for $227,000. And the movie went out and made $3 million at the box office and stuff. And it took seven years for us to see any profit from that movie. For seven years, they were like: ‘Nope, the movie is still not in profit.’ And we were like ‘How?’ And then there were things,” Smith once confided to Variety.
Still, despite Weinstein not paying Smith back, Smith asserted that he kept working with the mogul due to his salary.
“Believe me, I ain’t crying poor. And I got ridiculous escalating salaries,” he continued. “By the time I did Zack and Miri Make a Porno, I think I made between $5 or $6 million. So come on, that’s ridiculous. But that was my salary. Upfront money was so good. I was never like, ‘Hey man, where’s those nickels and dimes on the back end?'”
Kevin Smith once cursed out Harvey Weinstein for displaying disgusting behavior during a movie
Although Smith mostly kept things cordial with Weinstein, there was one instance where he couldn’t tolerate the producer’s behavior. In a 2011 interview with The Guardian, Smith recalled holding the premiere of his movie Red State at the Sundance Festival. As soon as the film opened, however, Weinstein was already disrupting Smith’s cinematic experience.
“I open the curtain at the back and I see Harvey outside, talking,” Smith said. “He’s talking about the Jets. Loud as f***. The opening of my movie, first seven minutes.”
The Jay and Silent Bob director then handled the situation differently than he would’ve in the past.
“Old Kev just would have gone, ‘Harvey, shh, movie’s on.’ But it disgusted me so much. It doesn’t get much more heartbreaking. So I f******’ lost it, and I went out and said, ‘Hey. Shut the f*** up!’ And he looked at me with f****** hate in his eyes. And I said, ‘Yeah. That’s me and I’m saying it.’ And he just left,’” he remembered.
Kevin Smith wouldn’t have worked with Harvey Weinstein if he knew about the producer’s allegations
Smith once shared that if he had known about Weinstein’s future accusations when the two first collaborated, he wouldn’t have partnered with the producer. Even if that meant potentially sacrificing his career in the process.
“If you’d gone back in time and told that kid: ‘This is all you’ll do, but it will be connected to a person who does all of this to all these people,’ I definitely wouldn’t have done it. I was way too Christian,” he said in another interview with The Guardian.
Smith also shared that a week before the allegations against him were released, he received a call from Weinstein. The two discussed a potential sequel to his 1999 movie Dogma. But in the wake of the news that followed, Smith wondered if Weinstein’s phone call had ulterior motives.
“He was circling his wagons,” Smith said. “I am not a victim here. But I felt used a little bit.”