CNN’s Chris Wallace put bad boy director Quentin Tarantino on the spot about his long relationship with disgraced Hollywood powerbroker and Democratic party donor Harvey Weinstein and why he didn’t do more to prevent the serial predator from sexually assaulting women.
Wallace sat down with the filmmaker whose edgy, ultra-violent films include “Pulp Fiction, “Django Unchained” and the “Kill Bill” movies, a body of work in which he frequently teamed with the piggish Weinstein for a chat from his show featuring interviews with celebrities “Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace,” a segment of which aired during Friday’s edition “CNN This Morning.”
In the interview, Wallace pressed Tarantino on why he didn’t intervene, eliciting some frank remarks from the director who engaged in some soul searching long after he may have been able to make a difference.
“I just want to take a turn here. You made most of your movies with Harvey Weinstein. And he’s been convicted of rape. He’s now on trial in California on a second sex crimes case. You heard stories about him over the years you’ve said that, why didn’t you do more to try to stop him and try to protect the women?” Wallace asked.
Tarantino responded, “Well, I never okay. I’d never heard the stories that later came out at all. I heard the same stories that everybody had heard. What I wish…. what I wish I had done was talked to Harvey about it and said, ‘Harvey, you can’t do this.’”
“Well, what did you think this was?” Wallace asked.
“You know, frankly, to tell you the truth, I chalked it up to a Mad Men era version of the boss chasing the secretary around the desk,” the director responded, referring to the popular AMC series on advertising executives in the 1960s. “I’m not saying that’s okay. But I mean, that’s how…that’s, that’s how… that’s how I more or less heard….that….everything I heard was more or less in that category. And as his friend, I wish I had been more of a friend. And…there was no… there was never any talk of rape or anything like that. And the reason I didn’t was because that’s a real hard conversation to have because I…I felt it was pathetic. I felt what he was doing was pathetic. And, and I didn’t want to deal with his pathetic-ness.
“Looking back, do you have regrets?” Wallace inquired. “And the thought… I mean, when you say chasing the secretary around the desk, it’s one thing. Obviously, you say you didn’t know how severe it was, but did you think it was casting couch type stuff? Kind of Hollywood lure?”
Tarantino replied, “I thought it was the way I described it. The way I described it at first. I didn’t think it was ‘Okay, you do this for me or you’re not going to get this movie’. And I never heard any actresses say anything like that. It was just you know, you know, ‘Just don’t get in the back of a limo with him’ Right? I didn’t know anything that anybody else didn’t know I’m just the one honest enough to say that look, you know, I had, I had heard some of these – I had heard some of these things.”
“But not the things that came out just literally just the guy abusing his situation as a studio head. For the most part, like I have always heard that Louis B. Mayer did and all the Hollywood moguls did to one degree or another. Again, it was easy – it was easy – it was easy to compartmentalize it to some degree. Anyway, I feel bad about…look, I feel bad about it now. But what I…but what I feel bad about is I feel bad that I did not have a man to man talk with him about it,” he said.
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