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The Weinstein Company forced to sell

Eclabousséeed by the sexual scandal aimed at his co-founder Harvey Weinstein, the firm entered into negotiations with colony Capital.

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The Weinstein Company forced to sell
Can Weinstein Company (TWC) survive scandal that led to downfall of its founder, Harvey Weinstein, on charge of sexual assault? To cut short calls of feminists, who demand dissolution of studio, TWC reported, Monday, October 16, that she had entered into negotiations with colony Capital, investment fund of real estate magnate and friend of Donald Trump, Thomas Barrack.

In a communiqué, one of members of Board of Directors of TWC, Tarak Ben Ammar, announced that colony Capital would immediately inject funds into studio of Weinstein brors ( amount was not specified). In future, negotiations will deal with acquisition of "a significant part or all" of company's assets. The investor, Thomas Barrack, promised on his side to "Bring back" TWC "to his deserved position, an icon of independent cinema and television".

Since scandal erupted on October 5, and some 30 actresses and models have in turn claimed to have been victims of Mr. Weinstein's sexual advances, TWC (180 employees) struggles for his survival. Four members of board of directors resigned, including billionaire Dirk Ziff.

READ ALSO: Weinstein affair: The film industry confronted with its practices

Amazon Studios announced that it would end – with ir agreement – series project that David Russell was to run with Robert de Niro and Julianne Moore. Apple has dropped show on Elvis Presley planned with TWC. And Hachette publishing house broke contract that bound it to Weinstein Books division.

The TWC staff is suspected of covering actions of producer-CEO. According to New York Times, latter negotiated, over years, financial regulations with at least eight of its accusatory, an element that could hardly go unnoticed.

In an interview with Hollywood Reporter, Bob Weinstein, Harvey's younger bror and board member, dismissed se accusations. He claims that he did not know "predatory kind" of his elder, even though he was aware of his "sick and depraved" behaviour.

Criminal investigations

The two brors were in bad terms, he adds, and seldom spoke. Installed in Hollywood, while Harvey was in New York, Bob had founded his own label, Dimension Films, specializing in horror films. When first revelations leaked, Harvey Weinstein had been accusing his bror of having burst scandal to seize TWC, company y had co-founded in 2005.

Four criminal investigations were opened in New York and London – but none for moment in Los Angeles – against producer, discarded from his own company on 8 October. The Weinstein Company is poised, according to Bob Weinstein, to be renamed, to eliminate name of one who became persona non grata in Hollywood. To point that Academy of Cinema, which awards Oscars every year, decided Sunday, by a large majority, to exclude it.

READ ALSO: Weinstein case: The excluded producer of Academy of Oscars

After a Democratic boss, old independent studio should pass to hands of an investor close to Donald Trump. The boss of Colony Capital, Thomas Barrack, 70 years old, grandson of Christian emigrants from Syria, experienced a rise in real estate parallel to that of current president. He represented several princes of Saudi royal family in ir investments in United States, and helped Donald Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to restructure ir debt when ir real estate affairs were in trouble in New York.

He was one of main financiers of Donald Trump's campaign for White House, n investiture ceremonies, which he chaired organizing committee. He was also one who recommended his old friend Paul Manafort, who met forty years ago in Lebanon, as campaign director of Republican candidate. The Manafort lobbyist is now at heart of FBI investigation into suspicions of collusion in Trump's campaign with Russia.

Thomas Barrack is not quite a stranger to world of cinema. In 2010, he had participated in Tour de table, including Qatar Sovereign investment Fund, which had bought Miramax and his collection of 700 films at Disney for $663 million. Becoming President of new studio, he had been one of first to build distribution agreements with Netflix, taking advantage of expansion of online movie streaming.

Six years later, ex-independent film icon – named after first names of parents Weinstein, Miriam and Max – was acquired by BeIn Media, a subsidiary of Al Jazeera group, for $1 billion.

Chronology of Weinstein case October 5: New York Times publishes an investigation that producer has concluded eight amicable settlements of sums of between $80 000 and $150 000 with women accusing him of sexual harassment and Unwanted physical contact. Initially, Harvey Weinstein apologized for his behaviour and announced that he was on leave from his production companies Miramax and Weinstein Company. A lawyer from Mr. Weinstein announces that he is preparing to complain against daily newspaper. October 6: The Board of Directors of Weinstein Company, production house co-founded by Harvey Weinstein, announces that it has taken an "indefinite leave" of company. Several elected officials of Democratic Party announce that y will be giving back contributions received from Harvey Weinstein to charities. October 7: Lisa Bloom, counsel for civil rights advocacy officer, Harvey Weinstein, known for defending women harassed by host Bill O'Reilly of Fox News, renounces his defence. October 8: Harvey Weinstein is dismissed by Board of Directors of production house that he co-founded, according to a statement from Weinstein Company.

Sharon Waxman, creator of site specializing in show-business Wrap, assured that she had collected, as early as 2004 and while she was a reporter at New York Times, testimony of a woman who had entered into a confidential agreement with Harvey Weinstein after been sexually assaulted. She stated that she had been under pressure and suggested that editorial direction of newspaper would have yielded to Harvey Weinstein.

October 9: The Hollywood Reporter magazine publishes an email that Harvey Weinstein sent to several Hollywood studio executives, in which he asks m for support.

October 10: The New Yorker publishes result of his long-running investigation into accusations against Harvey Weinstein: Three women now accuse him of rape. The University of Sourn California announces that it refuses a $5 million donation from Harvey Weinstein. The Wall Street Journal reports that Weinstein Company will change its name.


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