Ashley Judd suing Harvey Weinstein

Asley Judd on sexual harassment

Harvey Weinstein is lashing back after Ashley Judd announced that she has filed a lawsuit for attempting to ruin her career. My career was damaged because I rebuffed Mr. Weinstein's sexual advances.

In her lawsuit, obtained by Deadline, Judd claims that by saying no to Weinstein, he "torpedoed Ms. Judd's incredible professional opportunity" when he told Jackson and his producer partner Fran Walsh "that (his) studio had had a "bad experience" with Ms. Judd, and that Ms. Judd was a "nightmare" to work with and should be avoided "at all costs".

In the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, Judd accuses Weinstein of defamation, sexual harassment and violating California's unfair competition law.

Her worst fears were realised at the end of previous year when Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson confessed he turned his back on Judd and Mira Sorvino based on remarks Weinstein had allegedly made about the actresses, and now the Frida star is taking action to seek justice for opportunities missed. Judd was in the first group of women who came forward last fall about Weinstein's sexual misconduct, putting her at the forefront of the #MeToo movement.

"With those baseless smears, Weinstein succeeded in blacklisting Ms Judd and destroying her ability to work on what became a multi-billion-dollar franchise with 17 Academy Award wins and many more nominations", Mr Boutrous wrote.

Through a spokesperson, Weinstein, who co-founded Miramax and the Weinstein Company, has repeatedly denied "any allegations of non-consensual sex". "My career opportunities, after having been defamed by Harvey Weinstein, were significantly diminished".

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A representative for the disgraced film producer roundly denied Judd's claims in a statement released to The Hollywood Reporteron Monday.

Weinstein's spokesman pointed out at the time that Judd appeared in two subsequent Weinstein films - "Frida" (2002) and "Crossing Over" (2009) - and said Sorvino was also considered for other films.

The document goes on to describe the "pathetic reality" that Weinstein was retaliating after Judd, 50, rejected his sexual advances a year earlier, when he allegedly cornered her in a hotel room under the guise of discussing business.

The statement from Weinstein's attorney also claims he "fought for Ms. Judd as his first choice for the lead role in "Good Will Hunting" and, in fact, arranged for Ms. Judd to fly to NY to be considered for the role". "This was probably in 1998", Jackson was quoted as telling Fairfax New Zealand.

"Mr. Weinstein has nothing but the utmost respect for Peter Jackson".

On Monday, Judd said in an interview with ABC that hearing Jackson's explanation of why she'd been axed from the film made her feel "very sad".

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