Recent news about disgraced studio head Harvey Weinstein has focused largely on the dozens of sexual-assault and harassment allegations lodged against him by actresses and women in his employ. Now, in the new Channel 4 documentary Working With Weinstein, producer David Parfitt adds his own account to Weinstein’s reckoning. He describes an incident in which he says the former Weinstein Company exec physically assaulted and verbally threatened him after a screening of 2011’s My Week With Marilyn that went better than Weinstein had expected.
“When we actually got through the main shoot and into the test, he decided it wasn’t enough Marilyn’s film and that he wanted more Marilyn,” Parfitt explains, according to Deadline. “The scores came in at the end of the test and they were very good, and I think he’d expected it to be not good. In his fury about it doing so well when he thought it wouldn’t, he physically assaulted me. We were talking at the back of the theater after the audience had left, but the Miramax crowd were around, and he pinned me up against a Coke machine and threatened all sorts of stuff. It was very scary. But he was just furious that the film in our version had worked.” Working With Weinstein, which reportedly focuses on Weinstein’s work in the British film industry, airs tomorrow night in the United Kingdom.
When reached for comment, meanwhile, a spokesperson for Weinstein denies that the alleged encounter ever took place. “Mr. Weinstein categorically denies Mr. Parfitt’s claims as provably untrue and outrageous fiction. Mr. Parfitt and Mr. Weinstein had creative differences and any conflict between them was solely over their different visions for the film,” they said. “While they had a series of spirited arguments where Mr. Weinstein made a lot of stupid remarks that he wishes he could take back, nothing physical happened.” The spokesperson goes on to defend Weinstein’s vision of the film, which required the musical numbers they claim Parfitt did not include in the screened cut and which ended up in the film’s final version. The spokesperson added, “Michelle Williams won the Golden Globe for her performance in the best musical comedy category and everyone that was associated with the movie, who saw it with the musical numbers, liked it better.”