As allegations against disgraced Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein pile up, more and more celebrities are coming forward to either confirm or deny their own preexisting knowledge about the situation.
On Wednesday, Seth MacFarlane explained the origins of a 2013 joke he made at Harvey Weinstein’s expense during the announcement of Academy Award nominations.
MacFarlane cracked his joke immediately after he listed the nominees for supporting actress. “Congratulations,” he said. “You five ladies no longer have to pretend to be attracted to Harvey Weinstein,” which got a considerable response from the room.
“In 2011, my friend and colleague Jessica Barth, with whom I worked on the ‘Ted’ films, confided in me regarding her encounter with Harvey Weinstein and his attempted advances,” MacFarlane said in a statement on social media Wednesday. "She has since courageously come forward to speak out. It was with this account in mind that, when I hosted the Oscars in 2013, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to take a hard swing in his direction.”
Barth was one of several women who shared her experience in Tuesday’s New Yorker story about Weinstein’s alleged sexual harassment and assault.
“Make no mistake, this came from a place of loathing and anger,” MacFarlane continued. "There is nothing more abhorrent and indefensible than abuse of power such as this. I respect and applaud my friend Jessica and those sharing their stories for their decision to come forward, and for being champions of the truth.”
The “Family Guy” creator went on to host the 2013 Oscars in a show remembered by many for its many jokes made at the expense of women, including references to bulimia and an extensive song-and-dance routine about Hollywood actresses titled “We Saw Your Boobs.”