A businesswoman suing media mogul Harvey Weinstein, claiming that he raped her in 2011, has released video showing the two of them just hours before the alleged assault. Thompson says that she accepted Weinstein's offer in the hopes that it would help her close the business deal, and that she felt comfortable meeting Weinstein even after he touched her inappropriately because she believed it would be in a public space.
Video from that meeting, which Thompson took on her laptop in 2011 as a recorded presentation, aired on Sky News Wednesday as part of an exclusive interview with Thompson. When Thompson reaches out her hand to shake with Weinstein, he swats it aside and instead embraces her in a long, uncomfortable looking hug and intimately runs his hands up and down her back.
It also shows her joking about his advances, saying that "data is hot".
In the video, Weinstein eventually agrees to use Thompson's service.
In a statement, Weinstein's lawyer Benjamin Brafman said: "The video, when viewed in its entirety, in context and not in select excerpts, demonstrates that there is nothing forceful, but casual - if not awkward - flirting from both parties ..."
Instead it recorded an excruciating encounter with the man who now faces criminal charges of sexual assault in a NY court, as well as scores...
Thompson said Wednesday that she was trying to "save face" at first during the meeting.
The conversation, captured on camera, sees Weinstein asking if he is "allowed to flirt" and stating that Thompson is "hot". "It's okay, would you like to do it some more?" he can be heard saying.More news: WC recorded most gang-related murders, crime stats reveal
"Every time that he toed the line of being inappropriate enough where I may have said something, he could sense it and he pulled back and he changed the dynamic again", Thompson said.
It was at this later meeting that Thompson alleges she was raped by the Hollywood executive. "I had never met anyone that I couldn't handle, until Harvey Weinstein", she said.
Weinstein then invites Thompson for a drink at the Tribeca Grand hotel room at 5:30 p.m., and she accepts. I constantly felt trapped, no matter where I turned.
Thompson, who had previously worked on Wall Street, rejected suggestions she encouraged Weinstein's behaviour. "We don't have to live with being raped when we think we're going to a business meeting", Thompson said.
"Anything short of that is meant to make Mr. Weinstein appear inappropriate, and even exploitative", said Benjamin Brafman. "It was produced by Ms. Thompson to bolster her position in a civil lawsuit seeking money".
Weinsten has denied all nonconsensual sexual contact. The next hearing in the case is scheduled for 20 September.
"This is a further attempt to publicly disgrace Mr Weinstein for financial gain, and we will not stand for it", he said. They include: film actress Rose McGowan, who said Weinstein raped her in 1997 in Utah; "Sopranos" actress Annabella Sciorra, who said he raped her in her NY apartment in 1992; and the Norwegian actress Natassia Malthe, who said he attacked her in a London hotel room in 2008.