(LOS ANGELES) — Actress Ashley Judd and her lawyers have filed a lawsuit today against disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein, claiming that he damaged her career by blocking her from getting major movie roles in retaliation for turning down his advances.
“I lost career opportunity. I lost money. I lost status and prestige and power in my career as a direct result of having been sexually harassed and rebuffing the sexual harassment,” Judd told ABC News on Monday. “My career opportunities, after having been defamed by Harvey Weinstein, were significantly diminished. … My career was damaged because I rebuffed Mr. Weinstein’s sexual advances. I know it for a fact.”
Judd, who said she had not heard from Weinstein, said she would donate any monetary damages from the lawsuit to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund.
In December, Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson spoke to the New Zealand publication Stuff and said that Weinstein made him blacklist certain female stars, including Judd.
Judd said today that learning of that had made her feel “very sad.” She told ABC News that she was up for a role in the film and then “radio silence.”
“It’s very upsetting, you know,” she said. “It was a special time to be invited into their offices. … Then all of a sudden, mysteriously, we never heard back.”
A statement from Weinstein’s spokesperson reads, “The most basic investigation of the facts will reveal that Mr. Weinstein neither defamed Ms. Judd nor ever interfered with Ms. Judd’s career, and instead not only championed her work but also repeatedly approved her casting for two of his movies over the next decade. The actual facts will show that Mr. Weinstein was widely known for having fought for Ms. Judd as his first choice for the lead role in Good Will Hunting and, in fact, arranged for Ms. Judd to fly to New York to be considered for the role. Thereafter, Ms. Judd was hired for not one, but two of Mr. Weinstein’s movies, Frida in 2002 and Crossing Over with Harrison Ford in 2009. We look forward to a vigorous defense of these claims.”
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