“She Said”: diving into the investigation that brought down Harvey Weinstein

“She Said”: Diving into the investigation that brought down Harvey Weinstein

DAY

A film about the Harvey Weinstein affair, but above all an ode to investigative journalism and to the women who had the courage to speak out: She Said,< /em> presented Thursday evening in New York, recounts the long investigative work that sparked the #MeToo movement five years ago. 

Already sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape and sexual assault in 2020 in New York, and tried again in Los Angeles since Monday, the former powerful film producer used to frequent the screening rooms of the Film Festival of New York, which closes its 60th edition on Friday.

But on one of the stages at Lincoln Center on Thursday night is actress and feminist activist Ashley Judd, one of the first to have denounced the sexual harassment that Harvey Weinstein had subjected him to, which was given a standing ovation by the public.

In Maria Schrader's film, Ashley Judd plays her own role, that of an actress who refused the sexual advances of the producer and paid the price during her career, before resolving years later to speak with her face uncovered. .

“It's so important to be in our truth and to have a moral right to our own history that I had no trouble doing it,” she said of her role, before to pay tribute to his “sisters,” other Weinstein victims who were also present at the screening.

Duet

On October 5, 2017, when the article by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey is published by the New York Times, after months of work, it will immediately cause the downfall of the untouchable Hollywood producer and the wave of liberation #MeToo of the voice of women on sexual violence or sexism, well beyond the cinema.

But She Said, adapted from the eponymous book by the two Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists, pays little attention to the repercussions of their investigation. Like the films The President's Men (1976), on the Watergate scandal, and Spotlight (2015), which put the spotlight on the investigation of the Boston Globe focusing on child crime in the Catholic Church, the film She Said is above all a tribute to the patient and tenacious work of investigative journalists.

Nearly half a century after the Washington Post duoPlayed by Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman (in The President's Men), they are two women, seasoned journalists and young mothers, who make the powerful tremble with the help of an editor in the shadows , but crucial, Rebecca Corbett and the unwavering support of their editor, Dean Baquet.

“One of the reasons we are so honored by this film is that it truly embodies our beliefs in journalism,” Jodi Kantor explained after the screening. “We've been journalists for a long time, but the Weinstein case kind of underlines everything we believe in and puts exclamation marks on it,” she added.

The duo are embodied by Zoe Kazan, who plays Jodi Kantor, and Carey Mulligan for Megan Twohey. 

The film highlights their complementarity: at the premiere, the work of persuasion and empathy to bring victims to testify, actresses and employees of Miramax; on the other, the duels against Weinstein's lieutenants. 

With a sober staging and writing, and accompanied by the serious music of Nicholas Britell, She Said rises in intensity until the final face-off between the New York Times and Harvey Weinstein and his lawyers, at the time of the publication of the article.

The film distributed by Universal Pictures, which counts Brad Pitt among its producers, will be released in theaters on November 18 in the United States, then in Europe in the following days.