Actress Jessica Chastain is convinced her pal Matt Damon was “manipulated” into helping Harvey Weinstein shut down a previous expose on his bad behavior.
The Bourne Identity star found himself dragged into the ongoing sex drama surrounding the Hollywood movie mogul over the weekend (07-08Oct17) after journalist Sharon Waxman revealed she had had a 2004 expose on Weinstein’s bad behavior drastically altered by her editors at The New York Times following calls from the producer’s collaborators Damon and Russell Crowe.
Damon spoke to Deadline.com to clear up reports of his apparent involvement in what appeared to be a cover-up on Tuesday (10Oct17), insisting he was only asked by Weinstein to vouch for the professionalism of Fabrizio Lombardo – the head of the Italian office of Weinstein’s former production company Miramax – and agreed to put in a brief call to Waxman relaying his experiences working with Lombardo.
“I am not the story here,” Damon declared. “The story is these women and what happened to them.”
The actor insisted he was unaware of Weinstein’s alleged sexual misconduct and of claims suggesting Lombardo was responsible for procuring beautiful women for the 65-year-old producer.
Chastain had initially shared a link to Waxman’s weekend article mentioning Damon and Crowe on Twitter, revealing the news was “heart shattering”, but she has since reevaluated the case, and is adamant her The Martian co-star Matt did nothing wrong.
“I believe that Matt was manipulated,” she wrote alongside a link to the Deadline piece. “I’ve spent time with him on The Martian and he’s a really good guy.”
Chastain has been among the many celebrities sharing her comments about the Weinstein scandal on social media, and the Zero Dark Thirty star even revealed she had been warned against working with the fallen movie mogul in the past.
“I was warned from the beginning,” she wrote on Monday (09Oct17). “The stories were everywhere. To deny that is to create an environment for it to happen again.”
The Weinstein controversy first hit headlines on 5 October (17), when allegations of his sexual misconduct, dating back decades, were detailed in an expose in The New York Times. Further accusations have since been made in a follow-up Times piece and in the New Yorker magazine this week (begs09Oct17).
Weinstein has apologized for aspects of his past bad behavior, but has vehemently denied any allegations of non-consensual sex.