Salma Hayek: 'Harvey Weinstein threatened to break my knee caps'

Salma Hayek: 'Harvey Weinstein threatened to break my knee caps'

Salma Hayek has been one of the empowering voices behind the #MeToo movement since detailing the abuse she endured from Harvey Weinstein in a piece for The New York Times.

Oprah Winfrey recently chatted with Salma Hayek as part of her Super Soul Sunday Conversation special, when she revealed that her Wrinkle in Time co-star, Reese Witherspoon, was also greatly affected by the Weinstein scandal when it first broke last October.

The 51-year-old actress detailed her experiences with the disgraced movie mogul in The New York Times in December - two months after the publication first printed accusations about Weinstein from Ashley Judd and a group of other women.

During a live recording of Oprah Winfrey's SuperSoul - which centred on the current MeToo movement and Time's Up initiative - Hayek recounted (via The Hollywood Reporter): 'When the information about Harvey came out, I was ashamed I didn't say anything.

She also explained that she had trouble writing the essay. She recounted to the Times that when she rebuffed his sexual advances, he became enraged and made her existence on-set almost intolerable.

"...there was all this turmoil and I started crying when they asked and I ended up not doing it".

She added: "I was ashamed I didn't say anything. I've been working and supporting women for two decades. and then I was a coward".

Weinstein denied the allegations at the time and in a statement said he "does not recall pressuring Salma to do a gratuitous sex scene with a female costar and he was not there for the filming".

She continued: "Since those around me had no knowledge of my history of Harvey, they were very surprised by my struggle that morning. And maybe that's why he didn't rape me".

'He told me, 'I'm going to kill you, " she told Winfrey on Wednesday. I don't want us to go from victims to angry. "But I could not tell them then". "I thought of the shame (sic)".

The Frida star told Winfrey, 64, that she decided it was important to speak out because her pain was "so small" compared to other people's. I thought, "There's no point for me to talk because it happens to everyone"'.

The alleged harassment occurred when they were making the 2002 biopic Frida together and Hayek claimed Weinstein tried to thwart the project because she refused to grant him sexual favors. "It's important to take responsibility for the things we do to others, but we must stop apologizing for being attacked and we must move into a place where you can actually have a conversation".

Now with women like Hayek speaking up, we like to think future generations will be more prepared to handle and shut down Weinstein-like abusers for good.

The Guardian has requested comment from Weinstein.

Oprah at the Apollo will air on February 27 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network and will be available via podcast at Oprah's Super Soul Conversations.

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