During a recent appearance on Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace, the Oscar-winning director was asked about his decades-long relationship with the disgraced movie mogul. Tarantino, who began working with Weinstein in the early 1990s, admitted he had heard stories about the producer’s history of sexual misconduct, but was unaware of the most severe charges.
“I’d never heard the stories that later came out at all. I heard the same stories that everybody had heard,” he told the host, as reported by Variety. “What I wish I had done was talk to Harvey about it and say, ‘Harvey, you can’t do this.’ To tell you the truth, I chalked it up to a ‘Mad Men’-era version of the boss chasing the secretary around the desk. I’m not saying that’s OK. That’s how I heard it … in that category. There was never any talk of rape or anything like that.”
After working with Weinstein on nine different movies, Tarantino cut ties with the convicted rapist in 2017, when dozens of Hollywood figures began accusing Weinstein of sexual harassment and assault.
“The reason I didn’t [say something to Weinstein] was because that’s a real hard conversation to have,” Tarantino explained. “I felt it was pathetic. I felt what he was doing was pathetic and I didn’t want to deal with his pathetic-ness.”
He continued: “I didn’t think it was, ‘OK, you do this for me or you’re not going to get this movie.’ I never heard any actresses say anything like that. It was just, you know, ‘Don’t get in the back of a limo with him.’ It was easy to compartmentalize that to some degree. Anyway, I feel bad about. What I feel bad about is I feel bad that I did not have a man-to-man talk with him about it.”
Tarantino, who is currently promoting his new book Cinema Speculation, has addressed the Weinstein controversy on multiple occasions. During a 2021 interview on the Joe Rogan Experience, Tarantino described Weinstein as a “fucked up father figure,” and said wish he would’ve confronted the producer about the misconduct allegations, which were widely considered “open secrets.”
“I wish I had talked to him. I wish I had sat him down and gone, ‘Harvey you can’t do this, you’re gonna fuck up everything,’” Tarantino told the host. “I don’t think anybody talked to him about it. And the thing about it is everybody who was in his orbit knew about it … They didn’t know any, probably they didn’t know anything about rapes. But they had heard things.”