The flood of allegations against disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein has sent journalists back to the archives, searching for clues to Weinstein’s behavior no one followed up on. They haven’t been difficult to find—the thing about open secrets is that they’re open—but the 2005 warning from Courtney Love that TMZ tracked down is particularly striking. The footage comes from the red carpet at Comedy Central’s roast of Pamela Anderson, and is pretty unambiguous:
A Comedy Central reporter asks Love, “Do you have any advice for a young girl moving to Hollywood?” which is normally the softest of softball questions, but her response speaks volumes.
Love looks off into the distance and smiles very briefly, then answers, “Um …” before looking to someone offscreen, perhaps an assistant or manager. “I’ll get libeled if I say it …” she says, addressing the off-screen person more than the reporter, before turning rapidly to the mic and spitting out her answer: “If Harvey Weinstein invites you to a private party in the Four Seasons, don’t go.” Then she turns from the mic before the reporter can ask any follow-up questions.
You can actually see Love making a rapid-fire calculation of the risks of speaking out against Weinstein—prompted, again, by the most innocent question imaginable—before deciding to say what was on her mind before she could talk herself out of it. Her decision to say something did have consequences, but not for Harvey Weinstein, as she explained on Twitter:
No one should have to do that kind of math in their head in the middle of a bubbly red carpet interview.