Cara Delevingne is one of the latest to come out with a survivor story regarding Harvey Weinstein -- and her account reveals how he may have used homophobia as a fear tactic.
In a Wednesday Instagram post, the out actress recounted once receiving an "odd and uncomfortable" phone call from the former cochairman of the Weinstein Company. At the time, Delevingne had an established career as a model and had just begun to work in Hollywood. In addition, her sexuality had been a topic of speculation in the tabloids.
In the call, Weinstein asked "if I had slept with any of the women I was seen out with in the media ... i answered none of his questions and hurried off the phone but before I hung up, he said to me that If I was gay or decided to be with a woman especially in public that I'd never get the role of a straight woman or make it as an actress in Hollywood," the Paper Towns actress recalled.
Even today, many actors don't come out of the closet due to a perception of bias in the entertainment industry. A message like the one described by Delevingne from a Hollywood bigwig like Weinstein would have brought out the worst fears of a queer actor -- that being out would mean the end of a career.
Delevingne went on to describe an ensuing encounter that mirrors those described by other women who have accused Weinstein of sexual abuse. Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie have been among the growing list of actresses who have come forward with similiar, chilling accounts in TheNew York Times and The New Yorker, which often involve the complicity of assistants and other players in the entertainment industry.
But whereas most of these accounts entail a private encounter with Weinstein in a hotel room, Delevingne's involves another woman present.
"A year or two later, I went to a meeting with him in the lobby of a hotel with a director about an upcoming film. The director left the meeting and Harvey asked me to stay and chat with him. As soon as we were alone he began to brag about all the actresses he had slept with and how he had made their careers and spoke about other inappropriate things of a sexual nature. He then invited me to his room. I quickly declined and asked his assistant if my car was outside. She said it wasn't and wouldn't be for a bit and I should go to his room. At that moment I felt very powerless and scared but didn't want to act that way hoping that I was wrong about the situation," she said. She wasn't.
"When I arrived I was relieved to find another woman in his room and thought immediately I was safe. He asked us to kiss and she began some sort of advances upon his direction. I swiftly got up and asked him if he knew that I could sing. And I began to sing....i thought it would make the situation better....more professional....like an audition....i was so nervous. After singing I said again that I had to leave. He walked me to the door and stood in front of it and tried to kiss me on the lips. I stopped him and managed to get out of the room," she continued.
"I still got the part for the film and always thought that he gave it to me because of what happened. Since then I felt awful that I did the movie. I felt like I didn't deserve the part. I was so hesitant about speaking out....I didn't want to hurt his family. I felt guilty as if I did something wrong. I was also terrified that this sort of thing had happened to so many women I know but no one had said anything because of fear," she concluded.
In a following Instagram post, Delevingne shared a message with women and girls, that being a victim of sexual abuse "is NEVER their fault and not talking about it will always cause more damage than speaking the truth... This must stop. The more we talk about it, the less power we give them. I urge you all to talk and to the people who defend these men, you are part of the problem."
Delevingne starred in Tulip Fever, which was produced by the Weinstein Company -- although she did not mention this film by name in her post. She also starred in Pan, Suicide Squad, and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.
Notably, in 2015, she told the New York Times, "My sexuality is not a phase," in response to a previous article in Vogue that declared as much. She previously dated indie singer Annie Clark, also known as St. Vincent.
Delevingne is not the first queer person to come forward with a terrifying encounter with Weinstein. Nathan Lane, at the New Yorker Festival Saturday, claimed that Weinstein threw him against a wall at a birthday party for Hillary Clinton 15 years prior. "You can't hurt me, I don't have a film career," the gay actor allegedy responded to the producer at the time.
Read Delevingne's full account below.