The Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment stories have pervaded every corner of the Internet for the past few weeks, leading other actresses in Hollywood to share their stories about unsavory encounters and also leading people who were involved with Harvey Weinstein to talk about their experiences. One of the people to speak out has been Kevin Smith, who admitted during his Babble-On Podcast that his entire career is "tied to the man" and that he's looking for ways to make amends with the money he has made off of someone who reportedly used women. He said that he still gets money for movies he made with Harvey Weinstein early on in his career and he's been trying to think about how he could help with the problem, so he's giving some money to women in these sorts of situations. In fact, he's going to give it to Women in Film.
There's an organization called Women in Film. It's a non-profit group. It's historically much harder, of course, for a woman to get a film made than it is for a man. So, that feels like a start. It's like OK, any residuals I get from any Miramax or Weinstein title from here on in goes fucking right to them.
Kevin Smith has worked closely with Harvey Weinstein throughout his career. Over half of the movies he has made came to fruition because of Weinstein, including classics like Clerks, Chasing Amy, and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, among others. While some in the industry have claimed Harvey Weinstein's behavior was an open secret, Kevin Smith was very clear to say during his podcast that he didn't know, speaking fervently about his feelings after the news broke a few days ago. He said:
I'm not looking for sympathy. I know it's not my fault, but I didn't fucking help. Because I sat out there talking about this man like he was a hero, like he was my friend, like he was my father and shit like that, and he changed my fucking life. And I showed other people, like, 'You can dream, and you can make stuff, and this man will put it out.' Shit like that. I was singing praises of somebody that I didn't fucking know. I didn't know the man that they keep talking about in the press... it all hurts.
Harvey Weinstein had a huge effect on Kevin Smith's career. Clerks was filmed at the convenience store where Kevin Smith was working on an extremely low budget of $27,575. Miramax ended up buying the movie, launching Smith's career and allowing him to make plenty of other movies. As Smith himself notes, "his shit" is absolutely tied up with Weinstein.
Everything that I did in the beginning has his name on it. And I spent many years lionizing him, telling stories; whenever I tell the Clerks story, there's, you know, 'And then the movie got bought by Miramax.' I am not a victim in this and this is not about me, at all. We know who the victims are. But my shit is tied up with this man, and like this is the thing. It's been a weird fucking week. I just wanted to make some fucking movies, that's it. That's why I came [to Hollywood]. That's why I made Clerks. No fucking movie is worth all this. My entire career, fuck it, take it, it's wrapped up in something really fucking horrible.
In the time since the reports about Harvey Weinstein forcing himself on women he has worked with broke, Harvey Weinstein has been fired from his position at The Weinstein Company and was even forced out of The Academy. His reported behavior is still sparking debates and having a keen effect on the industry days later. As for Kevin Smith, the directors also said that if The Weinstein Company folds, he'll still dedicate $2,000 a month to the organization. He doesn't really have to do any of this, but as the quotes above show, it's clearly something that Smith has strong feelings about.