Harvey Weinstein’s Hollywood Scandal Taints Rounders Legacy

5 years ago
Harvey Weinstein’s Hollywood Scandal Taints Rounders Legacy
16 Oct

(Photo: THR.com)

As the breadth of the accusations against Harvey Weinstein continue to grow and more and more people get drawn into the mess. Even James Corden, usually so devoid of personality and edge, chased this trend into the bog and found himself sucked down by his attempt to poke fun at the man accused of serial rape. Hollywood’s sense of humour, never in great abundance at the best of times, was tooth-skin thin on this occasion and Corden has subsequently apologised.

Weinstein’s artistic and criminal legacy goes back to before the founding of Miramax in 1979 but with the success of his production company he was provided power and access to any number of actors whose careers were largely in his hands. We’ve seen again and again how institutions like the Catholic church and high school sports teams protect their members, and Hollywood, it seems, is no exception.

They did things differently in the past, and Harvey did more than most. But where Woody Allen and Roman Polanski’s careers hardly missed a beat Weinstein seems to be getting his. So far he has been condemned by his own brother, ousted from his own company, divorced by his own wife, and dumped by the Academy.

One should never go in for mob mentality and pitchfork justice, but it's hard not to a little pleasure in seeing the Furies catch up to their prey after all this time.

Harvey Weinstein’s Rounders 

Rounders has become an unexpected hub for this scandal with Matt Damon being accused of conspiring to kill a NYT piece on Fabrizio Lombardo, who is now believed to have ‘secured women’ for Weinstein.

While it later turned out that all Damon did was call Sharon Waxman at the NYT to give a character reference for Lombardo, once tarred, no matter how unjustly, the feathers are uncommon hard to get off.

Ben Affleck, nearest and dearest of Matt Damon and a bit tasty on the poker felt himself, was put on the defensive after posting a cogent response condemning Harvey completely. Rose McGowan stepped forward on Twitter to point out his hypocrisy, claiming Affleck knew about Weinstein’s behaviour.

Meanwhile Gretchen Mol, Damon’s co-star in Rounders, also came forward with a more middle ground statement to defend her own reputation in the affair saying:

"No. I did not exchange sexual favors with Harvey Weinstein, or anyone, for advancement in my career […]" Mol wrote continuing: "this is in no way a defense of this person, it is merely a statement of fact."

Which is probably the nicest thing anyone will say about Harvey Weinstein for a while. 

Even his male colleagues, who were largely immune from being groped, raped, or harrassed sexually unflattering in their descriptions of him. Brian Koppelman, co-writer of Rounders described his relationship with Weinstein as one characterised by lies and bullying.

This raises the perennial questions; is enjoying the film a kind of tacit endorsement of the maker’s behaviour? and how are we to set our own house in order?

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Jon is a freelance writer and novelist who learned to play poker after watching Rounders in year 9. He has been giving away his beer money at cards ever since. Currently he is based in Bristol where he makes sporadic donations to the occasional live tournament or drunken late night Zoom session. He ...Read more


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