Harvey Weinstein has issued a statement after a number of sexual harassment allegations were made against him. In a statement, he said: "I appreciate the way I've behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain and I sincerely apologize for it." The film producer did dispute a report made by the New York Times, however, claiming that he had harassed female employees over nearly three decades. The newspaper also stated that he had reached settlements with at least eight women. Actresses Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan are among those who have accused Mr Weinstein of inappropriate behaviour.
The 65-year-old creator of Miramax, who is married to Georgina Chapman, founder of the Marchesa fashion label, said he now plans to take a leave of absence from his company. "My journey will now be to learn about myself and conquer my demons," he added. "I so respect all women and regret what happened. I cannot be more remorseful about the people I hurt and I plan to do right by all of them."
Mr Weinstein's lawyer, Lisa Bloom, said in an additional statement that he denies many of the allegations against him as "patently false". She said that as a women's rights advocate, she had told him that some of his behaviour "can be perceived as inappropriate, even intimidating". "He has acknowledged the mistakes he has made," Ms Bloom said. "He is reading books and going to therapy. He is an old dinosaur learning new ways."
The Oscar-winning producer of films including Pulp Fiction and Shakespeare In Love has been married to designer Georgina since 2007 and they share two children together. Prior to that, he was married for more than 20 years to Eve Chilton, with whom he has three children. Mr Weinstein told the New York Post that his wife is supporting him in light of the allegations.
"She stands 100 per cent behind me," he said. "Georgina and I have talked about his at length. We went out with Lisa Bloom last night when we knew the article was coming out. Georgina will be with Lisa and others kicking my a** to be a better human being and to apologize to people for my bad behaviour, to say I'm sorry, and to absolutely mean it."
He added: "I also have the worst temper known to mankind, my system is all wrong, and sometimes I create too much tension. I lose it, and I am emotional, that's why I've got to spend more time with a therapist and go away.
"My temper makes people feel intimidated, but I don't even know when I'm doing it. In the past I used to compliment people, and some took it as me being sexual, I won't do that again. I admit to a whole way of behaviour that is not good. I can't talk specifics, but I put myself in positions that were stupid, I want to respect women and do things better."