Emma Thompson has been praised for her powerful discussion on the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment allegations while appearing on BBC's Newsnight on Thursday. The Oscar-winning actress stated that Harvey was at the "tip of a very particular iceberg", and stated that the industry needs to change. Emma said: "I didn't know about these things but they don't surprise me at all, and they are endemic to the system anyway. What I find extraordinary is that this man is at the top of a very particular iceberg. I don't think you could describe him as a sex addict. He's a predator. What he is top of the ladder of, is a system of harassment and belittling and bullying and interference. What my mother would have referred to in the olden days as 'pestering'."
When asked if she believes that many other Hollywood producers have harassed as many women as Harvey, she said: "Maybe not to that degree. Do they all have to be as bad as him to make it count? Does it only count if you do it to loads of women, or if you've done it to one woman, once? I think the latter." Viewers were quick to praise the star, with one person writing: "I don't say this enough: thank god for Emma Thompson," while another person added: "Kudos to the ever brilliant Emma Thompson for speaking so eloquently on this enormous problem."
The actress continued to say that more women need to be in positions of power in Hollywood, adding: "The most important thing is we can extrapolate from this event is what's really going on, otherwise all that’s going to happen is everyone will say, 'Hey do you remember Jimmy Savile, do you remember Harvey Weinstein?' We have to get more women in the profession in positions of power… I do see and hear a lot of voices, and I do want add mine to theirs and say that Hollywood can and must change."
Harvey has now entered a treatment facility, The Meadows, in Arizona for a 45-day inpatient program for sex addiction and behavioural issues. In his statement, he wrote: "I came of age in the 60's and 70's, when all the rules about behaviour and workplaces were different. That was the culture then. I have since learned it's not an excuse, in the office - or out of it. To anyone. Though I'm trying to do better, I know I have a long way to go. That is my commitment. My journey now will be to learn about myself and conquer my demons."