In an interview with TheWrap, disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein said he was sincere in his apology for sexual misconduct, but that he still intended to sue The New York Times for its bombshell story about his sexual misconduct over the years.
“I mean every word of that apology,” he told TheWrap. “The reason I am suing the New York Times is they didn’t give me enough time to respond.”
Weinstein and one of his lawyers, Lisa Bloom, both told TheWrap that they received the detail of allegations of sexual misconduct two days ago, and were told they had until 1 p.m. today to respond.
“We said, ‘What is it, tell us the allegations, we will respond. Harvey is going to be admitting some stuff,'” said Bloom, who was with Weinstein in his New York office.
“Two days ago, after begging, they gave us a couple dozen allegations that spanned 30 years and a dozen countries. They said we have until 1 pm today. We said ‘Why?’ They never said.”
“We are confident in the accuracy and fairness of our reporting,” a New York Times spokesperson tells TheWrap. “Mr. Weinstein had ample time to respond to specific allegations, which dealt with events that he had first-hand knowledge of, before our story published. We published his entire response, which acknowledges a history he now regrets. But the real issue is whether the story is accurate. Mr. Weinstein has not challenged any facts in our story.”
Weinstein and Bloom said they had no intention of suing any of the alleged victims. “We have made a decision we are not going after any women or accusers,” Bloom said. “But we have witnesses who said that some of this didn’t happen.”
The Times broke a lengthy investigative piece on Thursday alleging three decades of sexual misconduct by the Hollywood mogul, and said that eight women had received monetary settlements over the years in exchange for their silence.
Many who read Weinstein’s mea culpa, which included an unusual declaration that he would devote his energy to go after the National Rifle Association, as mitigated by the fact that his attorneys announced plans to sue the paper.
In apologizing, Weinstein said: “I appreciate the way I’ve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it.”
He added: “I’m going to give the NRA my full attention. I hope Wayne LaPierre will enjoy his retirement party. I’m going to do it at the same place I had my Bar Mitzvah.”
Bloom, whose advocacy for Weinstein has raised eyebrows since she is best known for representing accusers in high-profile sexual harassment cases, said the two were unrelated.
Weinstein said that he wrote the apology himself, contrary to a report from inside his own company that said Bloom wrote it.
“Harvey dictated it and I sent it right out,” said Bloom, whose book “Suspicion Nation” is being adapted by TWC into a TV miniseries.
The Weinstein Company board was meeting on Thursday night to decide the CEO’s fate.