11:00am PT by Scott Feinberg
CBS Films President Vows to Quit Academy If Harvey Weinstein Isn't Booted
CBS Films president Terry Press, one of the most powerful and respected women in Hollywood, says she will resign from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences if Harvey Weinstein's membership is not revoked in the wake of a slew of allegations against Weinstein involving sexual harassment, assault and rape.
The Academy on Wednesday issued a statement calling Weinstein's behavior "repugnant" and promising, "The Board of Governors will be holding a special meeting on Saturday, Oct. 14, to discuss the allegations against Weinstein and any actions warranted by the Academy."
"If the Academy does not kick him out, I am resigning my Academy membership," Press posted to Facebook on Thursday morning, commenting above a Vanity Fair article about Weinstein's accusers. "Maybe its [sic] possible that some people did not know about his sick and debased behavior..but what is not possible is for ANYONE to stay [sic] they didn't know he was a sociopathic bully who has always mistreated his employees and staff, displayed monstrous narcissism and cruelty and enjoyed being a sadist. The idea that anyone would give him a second chance or entertain the notion that he can change is beyond absurd."
Press and Weinstein famously went head-to-head several times in the late 1990s, when Press was head of marketing for DreamWorks and Weinstein was co-chief of Miramax. The Oscar season that began in 1998 and ended in 1999 pitted DreamWorks' Saving Private Ryan against Miramax's Shakespeare in Love, and, thanks in part to what Press and many others regarded as dirty tactics by Weinstein, Shakespeare in Love won best picture in the biggest upset in Oscar history up to that point. (Adding insult to injury, Weinstein, as one of the film's producers, personally received an Oscar.)
That season, it is widely remembered, changed the awards game forever, with Oscar campaigning growing ever more intense across the industry. What is less remembered, though, is that for the next three years in a row, Press-marketed DreamWorks films (American Beauty, Gladiator and A Beautiful Mind) won the best picture Oscar over Miramax films (The Cider House Rules, Chocolat and In the Bedroom).