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Jez Butterworth tells The News Agents he hit Harvey Weinstein

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Jez Butterworth tells The News Agents he hit Harvey Weinstein

From Harvey Weinstein to Prince Andrew…

Playwright and screenwriter Jez Butterworth has told The News Agents podcast that he ‘hit back’ film producer Harvey Weinstein, when Weinstein ‘physically attacked a producer, [he] was working on a film with in street’ describing Weinstein as, ‘phenomenally intelligent, phenomenally manipulative [and] a dangerously volatile child.’

Speaking to podcast hosts Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel, Jez also told The News Agents that, ‘hand on my heart I think nobody has filmed anything as important or as funny as [Emily’s 2019 interview with Prince Andrew] in the 21st century.’ Adding, ‘Andrew’s contribution to the human experience is so much bigger than anyone in his family could ever, ever achieve. He is part of a comedy double act there that will endure for centuries.’

Sharing his experience working with film producer Harvey Weinstein, Jez told Emily and Jon:

‘Well, I only made two films and the second one was for Harvey and it was 25 years ago now. And it was a horrible experience, in almost every way. And I was unaware at the time, but I was sent off to Los Angeles to cast the play and we were going to cast Nicole Kidman.

‘I was dispatched off to Los Angeles to interview and audition a bunch of other actresses. We went to the Peninsula Hotel and we were in a suite in the Peninsula Hotel, at the top there and the people who were coming through the door were the people who were the first vanguard of the people that outed him 20 years later. So, whether I was sent into that room as some kind of peace offering or threat, I don’t know.’

Asked whether he knew what the victims were going through at that time, Jez replied: 

‘No, I mean, I didn’t have any idea. I was sent along there, I was 28, 29 years old and I was sent to Los Angeles for the very first-time meeting actors who I thought could be great collaborators on this adventure we were going on. I had no idea what was going on behind the scenes.’

Jez Butterworth tells The News Agents podcast that he hit Harvey Weinstein after Weinstein “physically attacked a producer, [he] was working on a film with in the street.”

Further asked what his direct experience of Weinstein was when working with him, Jez said:

 ‘Pretty much what you’d imagine, he was phenomenally intelligent, phenomenally manipulative, a dangerously volatile child.’ 

On whether he ever confronted Harvey Weinstein, Jez said:

 ‘Yes, not about that. He physically attacked a producer I was working with on the movie in the street and I hit him back.’

Commenting on Emily’s Newsnight interview with Prince Andrew in 2019, Jez said:

‘Your interview with Andrew, talk about great drama, honestly with my hand on my heart I think nobody has filmed anything as important or as funny as that in the 21st century. Martin Scorsese said the most important film of the 20th century was the Zapruder footage of the Kennedy assassination and I didn’t think you could take the Kennedy assassination and cross it with The Office and end up with something that was just… I think in 400 years’ time I think it will be considered something so much more important…

Andrew’s contribution to the human experience is so much bigger than anyone in his family could ever, ever achieve. He is part of a comedy double act there that will endure for centuries. I watch it about once a month, which means I’ve watched it about a hundred times.’

Listen to the full interview on The News Agents podcast on Global Player. 

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