TORONTO — Canadian film and TV star Sarah Polley says Harvey Weinstein once suggested they have a “close relationship” in order to advance her career, but she turned him down.
In an op-ed in the New York Times over the weekend, the Oscar-nominated actress-turned-filmmaker wrote the encounter happened when she was 19 years old and starring in the 1999 Miramax film “Guinevere.”
The Toronto native says she was doing a photo shoot for the film when the fallen Hollywood producer summoned her into his office.
When a publicist insisted she accompany the actress to the meeting, Polley says she “knew everything I needed to know in that moment, and I was grateful.”
Polley says Weinstein told her if she had a “close relationship” with him, like the one he had with a famous star a few years her senior, she could have a similarly successful career.
But Polley told him she wasn’t very ambitious or interested in acting and indicated that he was wasting his time.
Polley’s piece, titled “The Men You Meet Making Movies,” also outlines her observations about the way women are treated on film sets and notes Weinstein “was just one festering pustule in a diseased industry.”
The op-ed was published as Weinstein faces mounting allegations of sexual harassment and assault in a saga that first broke in the Times.
Weinstein, who has been fired from the film company he co-founded, has previously denied through a spokeswoman any allegations of non-consensual contact.
Polley was nominated for an Oscar for writing 2006’s “Away From Her,” which she also directed. She also wrote and produced the new “Alias Grace” miniseries that’s on CBC-TV and is bound for Netflix.
Polley declined an interview request from The Canadian Press on Monday.
The Canadian Press