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Peter Jackson admits blacklisting actresses after receiving false information about them from Harvey Weinstein

Jackson connected the dots after the actresses spoke out about Weinstein.

76th Annual Academy Awards - Peter Jackson - Kodak Theater, Los Angeles Source: Hahn-Khayat-Nebinger/ABACA

DIRECTOR PETER JACKSON has admitted that he had previously blacklisted Mira Sorvino and Ashley Judd after receiving instruction to do so from Harvey Weinstein in the 1990s.

When Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy was first put into development, it was under Weinstein’s Miramax company. It later moved to New Line Cinema. Jackson told New Zealand entertainment website Stuff that he had considered casting Sorvino and Judd in the Lord of the Rings movies.

I recall Miramax telling us they were a nightmare to work with and we should avoid them at all costs. At the time, we had no reason to question what these guys were telling us. I now suspect we were fed false information about both of these talented women – and as direct result, their names were removed from our casting list.

DPA Germany - Mira Sorvino smiles Source: DPA/PA Images

With the hindsight he has now, he realises exactly what happened.

This was very likely the Miramax smear campaign in full swing.

Jackson also said that both Harvey and his brother Bob were actually particularly difficult to work with.

My experience, when Miramax controlled the Lord of the Rings, was of Weinstein and his brother behaving like second-rate Mafia bullies. They weren’t the type of guys I wanted to work with – so I haven’t.

Weinstein’s name was included in the credits of Lord of the Rings for contractual reasons, despite the fact he did not work on the trilogy. Jackson says it has been 20 years since he has interacted with Harvey Weinstein.

Mira Sorvino took to Twitter to express the pain she felt when she found out about this.

Sexual Misconduct-Mira Sorvino Source: AP/PA Images

She tweeted:

Just seeing this after I awoke. I burst out crying. There it is, confirmation that Harvey Weinstein derailed my career, something I suspected but was unsure. Thank you Peter Jackson for being honest. I’m just heartsick.

It is quite heartbreaking to think of Sorvino (and all of the other actresses who have been treated similarly) second-guessing their talent when work dried up after they attempted to stand up to Weinstein when nobody was listening.

This year Sorvino opened up to The New Yorker in October about her Weinstein experience.

She says that he tried to give her a massage, before chasing her around a hotel room at the Toronto Film Festival in 1995. Weeks later, Weinstein called her after midnight and showed up at her apartment unexpectedly. He did not leave until she lied and said that her boyfriend was on the way over.

In that same piece, Sorvino said that she thinks rejecting Weinstein had affected her career.

There may have been other factors, but I definitely felt iced out and that my rejection of Harvey had something to do with it.


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Kelly Earley

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