She may have to go incognito.
Geeky Candi has been doing some stellar investigation into the Leslye Headland Harvey Weinstein brouhaha. This blog post will discuss those findings and some additional information.
Let’s first look at this article is from Entertainment Weekly, published in 2012.
Harvey Weinstein’s former personal assistant writes tell-all play (sorta)
Leslye Headland loves Harvey Weinstein—despite having worked as his personal assistant. And he most likely loves her back—even after she penned the play Assistance, about ill-treated young personal assistants at a fictional corporation called the Weisinger Company headed by a demanding, impatient, perfectionist named Daniel Weisinger. At the very least, the Oscar-courting head of The Weinstein Company isn’t holding a grudge against Headland. The indie studio recently purchased her much-loved comedy Bachelorette (which she wrote and directed, based on her own play) at this year’s Sundance Film Festival.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You must have known that because of your connection to Miramax and the Weinstein Company, people assume Assistance is about Harvey Weinstein. Didn’t that scare you?
LESLYE HEADLAND: The thing is, the play is so much not about the boss. And when I was an assistant, I worked for a lot of different people. I worked for the copresident of production at Miramax. I work for Harvey for about a year, and then I worked for Arianna Huffington for about a month. It was a job I did for a while. So, it wasn’t like I came into contact with one person and was like, “Oh gosh, he or she would make a good story,” as much as it was like, ‘Wow, why was I an assistant for six years?’
In 2015 The Wrap published this article:
‘Sleeping With Other People’ Director on ‘Easy’ Male Leads, Sex Scenes With ‘Goody-Goody’ Alison Brie
As long as we’re on TWC, you’ve heard the studio’s president, David Glasser, resigned and then came back in the span of a few weeks. You must know something about the gravitational pull of Harvey Weinstein.
Fuck, yeah! Dad? It’s hard to leave Dad. I don’t know David, though.
You know, not to steal the Olive Garden’s thunder but when you’re there, you’re family. I don’t think that I’m ever not going to feel like I’m part of Harvey’s world. Even though we didn’t wind up doing this movie together, he’ll always be my movie dad.
That Star Wars Girl found the following 2015 video where Headland was exuberant to cite being Weinstein’s assistant as the project from her body of work that best represents her:
So from 2012 to 2015, Headland had some positive things to say about Weinstein, as did the writers who interviewed her. And why wouldn’t she? In 2012, The Weinstein Company bought distribution rights for Headland’s first feature film Bachelorette according to Deadline:
The Weinstein Company is closing a deal for North American distribution rights to Bachelorette, an edgy comedy written and directed by Leslye Headland. I’m hearing that the deal is in the vicinity of $2 million, and that the plan is for a multi-platform day and date release with a theatrical component. It’s the first significant festival acquisition made by Tom Quinn and Jason Janego since they joined The Weinstein Company to start a new company that takes advantage of the multi-platform release strategy. They’ve named the new company Radius.
But some time between 2015 and 2018, Headland’s disposition towards Weinstein seems to have changed. That time may have been 2017.
The following is from a 2018 article from americantheatre.org, which tells an entirely different version of the story told in 2012.
Leslye Headland on Sin, Certainty, and Harvey Weinstein
After a decade, she concludes her ‘Seven Deadly Plays,’ and finally opens up about her time working at Miramax.
Assistance also shows the culture that enables Weinstein-like behavior.
One hundred percent. At some point, I’ll probably speak a little bit more, when I have a little bit more clarity about what I can talk about.
When you’re in a traumatic situation like that, you reach out to the person next to you and they become your lifeline. And if that person starts behaving like the abuser, that’s when you start to go crazy and you start to believe all the phony stuff that you believe. You’re being asked to do things and you don’t know what they are—one moment you’re sitting at your desk and the next moment you’re on a plane and you’re in L.A. and you realize you don’t have a change of clothes, you haven’t showered in three days. It’s the relentless exhaustion of that kind of lifestyle.
And you’re being told that it’s glamorous and it’s this awesome thing that’s happening. But the reality is, this is bad. When someone is screaming at you, and a whole bunch of grown men are in the same room and don’t do anything, that tells you something right away about what kind of danger you may or may not be in. You’re like, “Oh, no one is going to stop this person. The only person that is going to make sure I don’t come to harm is me.”
In the same 2018 article, Headland also says:
You wrote Assistance, another play in the series, based on the six years you worked at Miramax as an assistant. Has the downfall of Harvey Weinstein been a surprise to you?
Mostly it was surprising because, especially when I was writing Assistance and when I was working on it at Playwrights Horizons [Off Broadway], it was so interesting to get notes on the play. It was the kind of thing where I couldn’t really talk about specifics, given that I was an ex-employee of the company and having signed everything that I signed. I was getting all these notes about, “How do we end the play?” No one said it to me, but what they were really asking was: How do you beat Daniel? [The play’s Weinstein stand-in.] But in my head I was like, “You don’t.” That guy always wins. He bought my movie [Bachelorette] a month before that play opened.
When Jodi [Kantor’s] article came out, I was shocked by the reception to it, because I just thought men like that never go down. I was so shocked and so emboldened by the chorus of voices that brought him down. It makes me so happy—even saying that has been hard for me, because I’m still scared of him, to be honest. And I think that’s why a lot of women still have not said anything. I am so grateful to those women for speaking their truths and for standing up for themselves.
The Disney insider WDW Pro, recently stated:
You have to understand, quotes like these come WELL after there were many, many, many reports about Weinstein and his predatory, criminal behavior towards women. And while you might think the hundreds of social media posts she had disappear in conjunction with the Variety leak were all lewd things, the truth is they were often loving, over-the-top endorsements of Weinstein.
The Entertainment Weekly article that WDW Pro refers to was published in 2012. But folks may recall that the early reports he speaks of were considered an “open secret” in Hollywood. They knew, and they did nothing.
Jodi Kantor’s New York Times article broke the Weinstein story in 2017. So for at least 3 years from 2012 to 2015 Headland was hunky-dory with Weinstein. It would be interesting to find Headland articles from 2016 and early 2017 to see if she held the same positive disposition towards Weinstein. But based on the information we have here, it would seem that Headland’s attitude towards Weinstein shifted when Kantor’s 2017 article came out, and Weinstein’s sexual misconduct was made public. Was Headland part of the culture that facilitated this “open secret” until it became fashionable to be bold and brave against it?
But there may be another factor. While WDW Pro claims that the tweets that Headland deleted were “loving over-the-top endorsements of Weinsten,” at least three of those tweets were not.
In 2018, Headland posted the following to Twitter according to Vulture:
In 2018, Vulture reported that David Mamet had wrote a play about the Harvey Weinstein story. Apparently, Headland wasn’t too pleased that a white male was able to get his play made, when she had written a play about the same topic. But the problem here as noted above, is that she told Entertainment Weekly in 2012:
The thing is, the play is so much not about the boss. And when I was an assistant, I worked for a lot of different people. I worked for the copresident of production at Miramax. I work for Harvey for about a year, and then I worked for Arianna Huffington for about a month. It was a job I did for a while. So, it wasn’t like I came into contact with one person and was like, “Oh gosh, he or she would make a good story,” as much as it was like, ‘Wow, why was I an assistant for six years?’
So in 2012 Headlan’s play Assistance was not about the boss. But in 2018, her play was very much about the boss. So frankly, it appears to me that Headland was using this #MeToo movement to push for a payday.
Then 2019 was the year that Headland would call white women out to step up:
Click on the image to watch the media on Twitter
Too bad Headland didn’t feel the need to step up herself until Kantor’s article came out. But Headland may not have any moral standards.
A 2015 article in the New York Times published the following:
The Women of Hollywood Speak Out
Leslye Headland is a 34-year-old writer and director who was in the same 2012 Sundance class as Trevorrow, with the movie version of her scorching Off Broadway play, ‘‘Bachelorette.’’ She bristles with ambition to do everything he is doing. Sitting in a red leather banquette at the Monkey Bar in New York, Headland told me she wants to be a Martin Scorsese, and ‘‘not just the female Martin Scorsese.’’ She wants to direct a James Bond movie, ‘‘even if I have to marry someone to get British citizenship.’’ She wants to make films in which women behave badly and are not held to a higher moral standard or seen as ‘‘less than.’’ She wants to look cool in magazine pictures so that ‘‘little girls will put female filmmakers on their Pinterest boards.’’
If you understand the SJW concept of “representation,” then it makes it highly likely that Headland was talking about herself here, wanting to “represent” women just like herself. So none of this should be all that surprising.
In 2020 Headland would delete 246 tweets on the day her Star Wars announcement came out. And the media appears to be joining her in her efforts.
Oddly, links to stories about Headland and Weinstein are no longer working:
Click on the image to watch the media on Twitter
Headland and the media are likely crafting excuses for this mess as you read this. They’ve already laid the groundwork for it.
Going back to 2012 for this article from The Hollywood Reporter:
‘Bachelorette,’ and the Importance of Being a Somewhat Terrible Person
“I think I’m probably the only teenage girl that watched The Graduate and related to Mrs. Robinson,” Leslye Headland, the film’s writer/director, told The Hollywood Reporter on Tuesday night at the film’s New York premiere. “I was like, ‘Why isn’t the whole movie about her? I just don’t understand.’ And I think that’s just like me as a person, like, I just for some reason have empathy for people that are sort of villainized for their weakness or their behavior.”
You see, Headland is so choc-full of virtue that she has empathy even for a guy like Weinstein.
Then vice.com wrote in 2017:
When Headland wrote the play, in 2008 or not long before, Twitter was in its early years. The online call-out culture that is now helping Weinstein’s accusers come forward safely did not exist. Twitter had only introduced the hashtag in the summer of 2007, and the platform was not yet being used as a tool for social justice. It was a different time and there were fewer safe channels for reporting abuse.
You see, no one was ever able to report abuse to anyone before Twitter and hashtag activism was invented.
Expect to see these two explanations/excuses used by the media in the near future.
The only thing I can’t figure out, is why Weinstein placed Headland on his “Red Flag List” which was a list Weinstein gave to his private investigator. It was a list of people who Weinstein thought might be talking to the media about his sexual misconduct. In other words, Weinstein thought Leslye Headland may have spoken to the media about his sexual misconduct. Was Weinstein just paranoid and suspecting everyone around him, or did Headland actually leak information about Weinstein to the media?
And what information might Headland have on Bob Iger, now that Iger is involved in the Weinstein mess as well?