She Said Movie Ending Explained: Harvey Weinstein’s arrest and conviction were the biggest news of recent years that exposes the dark truth about Hollywood and the filth happening inside, specifically relating to the sexual harassment of actresses and how these stories never made it to the surface of any big media outlet and even if they made it to the surface, they were either shut down or made it go away because of the powerful people in charge were the ones doing the harassment.
It isn’t an easy task to expose something so deeply rooted to the whole world which can even put your family at risk but the two New York Times journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey made it happen. The film “She Said” directed by Maria Schrader tells us the story of what exactly happened and how the duo went about exposing one of the biggest scandals of all time giving rise to the MeToo movement.
It starts in 2016, with the two journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey who have been working for NYT on stories to expose predators in New York. At that time, Megan had interviewed Rachel Crooks, a receptionist at Trump Tower who came up with a story about how Trump harassed her with his inappropriate behavior. Megan wanted to help and asked Rachel to publicly come forward with her story.
However, Rachel ends up backing off after she receives a threatening letter containing human waste. On the other end, Megan had been getting threats that made it impossible for her to write an article on Trump, and Trump’s continued dismissal of these allegations didn’t help either and he ended up winning the presidency. Pregnant at that time, Megan gave birth to a girl but was let down by what had happened and her defeat of letting Trump go and not being able to do anything to stop that.
Then a story broke written by NYT about Bill O’Reilly, the anchor for The O’Reilly Factor, on Fox News which made him quit the channel. This gave Megan some hope and she felt like this was a win. NYT Editor Rebecca Corbett wanted to pursue more stories about sexual harassment, specifically workplace harassment, and get a better understanding to why these problems are so hard to address.
Then starts an investigation by Jodi Kantor, an NYT journalist looking into the allegations of sexual misconduct and discovers information about a famous Hollywood Producer, Harvey Weinstein. There have been allegations against him 2 years ago but the NYPD wasn’t able to get any damning evidence against him.
Jodi then finds Rose McGowan, the woman who claimed to be a victim of Weinstein who had reached out to NYT but didn’t have a pleasant experience then so she refused to be of any assistance to Jodi at first but then she tells her about his mistreatment and sexual harassment by Weinstein in a hotel room. Jodi asks Megan for her assistance in this and the two start their investigation together.
Were There Any Other Cases Of Sexual Harassment?
After the journalists start their investigation, they find another Hollywood Actress Ashley Judd and her account of the events related to Weinstein were similar to Rose’s. She also told Jodi that Weinstein usually called the actresses to the Peninsula Hotel and molested them there. Jodi who was a bit skeptical of the accusations now started to believe they might be onto something and starts digging more.
Jodi wanted the victims to come out to the public about what happened but they were too scared to do that since they did not want to jeopardize their careers and didn’t think they would get work after that. Jodi and Megan tried to reach out to people who had worked or are currently working at Production companies owned by Weinstein.
They call an ex-assistant of Miramax Films but she refused to talk. During this time, Weinstein’s attorney had sent Jodi an email which said to not believe anything that Rose had said to him and described him as a “Pathological Liar”. Attempts to find any legal case against Weinstein in police reports were rejected by the Police.
Their investigation resulted in information about three settlement cases from Weinstein but they were NDAs and happened outside of the court and had privacy-related issues meaning the women who made the allegations had to turn in all of their personal belongings including phones, diaries and emails as well. So, the settlements did give them money but it also silenced them as well with the NDA’s and Weinstein continued to do as he pleased, molesting women.
How Was Harvey Weinstein Exposed?
It was Gwyneth Paltrow who came forward to help Jodi and Megan speak about the events similar to the previous accounts. However, she was quite reluctant to speak out because she feared a scandal might start and she was quite young when the assault happened. Jodi and Megan learn that an Italian Model had filed complaints against Weinstein in 2015 and obtained a recording of her and Weinstein in which he is clearly trying to convince the victims to come into his hotel room.
Megan calls the former district attorney to understand why Weinstein wasn’t charged based on the recording to which she’s shocked to learn that the case was dismissed because there wasn’t criminal conduct in the case. Gwyneth on the other side starts to get threats and wanted to take her name off of the investigation. Jodi and Megan get a tip about previous assistants of Weinstein who were the victims of his predatory behavior. They were Zelda Perkins, Rowena Chiu, and Laura Madden.
They were very reluctant to speak at first because even Gwyneth was getting threats so being ordinary women they were more prone to danger. However, the three of them did come out but not on record which was still insufficient to print an article. After constant efforts to get financial statements of Weinstein which were rejected by his lawyers, Jodi makes contact with a former Miramax accountant who despises Weinstein and he tells her about an ex-employee Lauren O’Conner who stated in a memo that Weinstein had physically abused her when she was just 28 years old.
As soon as the memo is received by NYT, Lauren notifies that she doesn’t want to be named. None of the victims were ready to go on record about their horrifying events to the point that the journalists wanted to publish the article with anonymized statements. Ashley Judd calls Jodi and tells her that she is ready to do this on the record. On the other hand, Weinstein had been constantly rejecting those allegations.
Then, Jodi hears from Laura Madden as well who wants to be mentioned in the article as well and then the NYT was finally able to publish an article with names and statements that were not anonymized.
Following that article on October 5, 2017, 82 women came forward to speak against Harvey Weinstein’s behavior, and in May of 2018, he was finally arrested on account of rape and sentenced to prison for 23 years. Jodi and Megan became role models and it all started the #MeToo movement.