Rosanna Arquette is done being frightened of Harvey Weinstein.
The actor, who once co-starred in the Weinstein-produced 1994 crime drama “Pulp Fiction,” is one of several women who tell their stories — of being sexually assaulted or harassed by the now-disgraced movie mogul — in the documentary “Untouchable,” which had its world premiere Friday evening at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.
Arquette — who has become a proponent of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements — said the cascade of women and men coming forward with stories of sexual assault and harassment, which began when Weinstein’s misdeeds were made public in October 2017, are spreading to industries beyond Hollywood.
“Every day I get phone calls — they tell me their stories,” Arquette said after the film, while getting compliments from festivalgoers.
Director Ursula Macfarlane interviewed Weinstein accusers, former colleagues at both Miramax and The Weinstein Company, and journalists — including Pulitzer Prize winners Ronan Farrow, Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, whose investigative work in The New Yorker and The New York Times chronicled decades of Weinstein’s behavior. Beyond the assaults, the movie discusses efforts to discredit and defame anyone accusing Weinstein.
Weinstein, who is facing criminal charges in New York, consistently has denied allegations that any sexual encounters he had were non-consensual. Macfarlane said her production team from the BBC requested an interview with Weinstein. “Obviously, he declined our request,” she said.
Sundance is an appropriate venue for “Untouchable” to premiere. The festival is where Weinstein made his reputation for acquiring independent films — including “sex, lies and videotape,” “Reservoir Dogs” and “Clerks” — and marketing them into hits. Also, at least three women have accused Weinstein of assaulting or harassing them in Park City hotels during Sundance; most famously, actor Rose McGowan accused Weinstein of raping her in Park City in 1997.
Another woman interviewed in the film is Lauren O’Connor, a former literary scout for The Weinstein Company, who filed an internal complaint about Weinstein’s abusive behavior. The complaint was leaked, and was a major part of Kantor and Twohey’s New York Times stories about Weinstein.
“He’s done everything to try and destroy Lauren,” Arquette told the audience at the MARC Theatre, adding that O’Connor has racked up debts in the six figures to fight Weinstein.
“There’s a huge tax on integrity,” O’Connor said during the Q&A.
O’Connor, like Arquette, is determined to fight on. “The only way forward is to figure out how to turn that into something good,” she said.