Meryl Streep has spoken out against disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, condemning his rampant abuse toward women in the entertainment industry, which was revealed to the masses last week and led to his firing on Sunday from the company he co-founded.
The actress, who has worked with the former Weinstein Company chief on films like “The Iron Lady” and “August: Osage County,” called the news of the titan’s violations “disgraceful” and his behavior “inexcusable.”
In a statement through her publicist Leslee Dart, Streep praised the women who are now speaking out against Weinstein as “heroes.”
She also shot down the notion that “everybody” in town knew about what many people have called an open secret. For starters, the Oscar winner said she had no idea.
Here is Streep’s full statement, which was first sent to HuffPost:
“The disgraceful news about Harvey Weinstein has appalled those of us whose work he championed, and those whose good and worthy causes he supported. The intrepid women who raised their voices to expose this abuse are our heroes.
“One thing can be clarified. Not everybody knew. Harvey supported the work fiercely, was exasperating but respectful with me in our working relationship, and with many others with whom he worked professionally. I didn’t know about these other offenses: I did not know about his financial settlements with actresses and colleagues; I did not know about his having meetings in his hotel room, his bathroom, or other inappropriate, coercive acts. And If everybody knew, I don’t believe that all the investigative reporters in the entertainment and the hard news media would have neglected for decades to write about it.
“The behavior is inexcusable, but the abuse of power familiar. Each brave voice that is raised, heard and credited by our watchdog media will ultimately change the game.”
On Sunday, Weinstein was fired from the company he started 12 years ago with his younger brother, Bob.
The Weinstein Company has been under intense pressure since The New York Times broke an investigative story on Thursday detailing three decades of sexual misconduct, including accusations that he propositioned actresses and harassed female employees.
Following those revelations, Harvey Weinstein took a voluntary leave of absence — and then was booted by his company’s board on Sunday.
More ugly stories continued to dribble out over the weekend, including a vulgar report by a TV reporter that Weinstein masturbated in front of her and other stories of inappropriate propositions.