She cemented her rise to fame with 1997’s Good Will Hunting, which earned her an Academy Award nomination.
But Minnie Driver revealed that her star-making turn almost didn’t come to pass after now-disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein objected to her presence in the film.
The 52-year-old actress claimed to the Times of London over the weekend that the 70-year-old convicted sex offender said that ‘Nobody would want to f*** her’ ahead of production.
Traumatizing: Minnie Driver, 52, claimed Harvey Weinstein tried to stop her from being in Good Will Hunting because he didn’t think she was attractive enough, according to the Times of London; pictured in NYC in August
Despite Weinstein’s offensive comments, the producers fought for her to remain on the picture, as did Matt Damon, who starred in the lead role and co-wrote the film with his friend and costar Ben Affleck.
‘I remember feeling so devastated until I realized, “Hold on, just consider the source for a minute. That is an unutterable pig — why on earth are you worried about this f*** saying that you are not sexy?”‘ she recalled.
She added that she balanced the relief of not being targeted like some of Weinstein’s other victims with the knowledge that he could still kneecap her career.
‘But there are ramifications of that: that maybe I am not going to be hired because people don’t think I have the sexual quality that is required,’ she continued. ‘How awful to think that I was one of the lucky ones [who escaped him] because he didn’t think I was f***able. And how amazing and wonderful that it has turned around and young men and women in my industry are not going to experience that.’
Cruel: ‘Nobody would want to f*** her,’ Weinstein reportedly said, which left Driver feeling ‘devastated’; seen in 2016 in Mountain View, Calif.
Sticking with it: Matt costar and co-writer Matt Damon was on her side, as were the film’s producers. The film earned her an Oscar nod; seen with Damon in Good Will Hunting
Weinstein, who is currently serving a 23-year prison sentence, claimed in a statement that he merely wanted Ashley Judd for the role instead of Minnie.
‘Harvey believes that Minnie Driver is an excellent actor, but it is true he had championed Judd for the role,’ said a representative for the disgraced producer. ‘He admits when he is wrong and Minnie was fantastic. He claimed to have never said anything regrettable about Ms. Driver and had hired her for several films. He wishes her luck and success on her memoir.’
Judd is currently suing Weinstein for allegedly blacklisting her from future projects and she scorned his sexual advances, according to Variety.
Minnie, who released the memoir Managing Expectations earlier this month, responded to The Cut earlier this month about claims that another producer working on Good Will Hunting also though she wasn’t sexy enough for the role.
‘It was devastating,’ she said of the criticism. ‘To be told at 26 that you’re not sexy when you maybe just got over all your teenage angst, and started to think, you know, Maybe in the right light and the right shoes and the right dress, I’m all right.
Excuse: Weinstein, who’s serving a 23-year prison sentence, claimed in a statement that he merely wanted Ashley Judd for the part; still from Good Will Hunting
‘When a producer — a man or woman or nonbinary person — distills an actor down to what they perceive as their sexiness, it’s so dismissive of that person,’ she said.
She added that actresses are regularly told ‘she’s too old’ or ‘she’s too tall,’ and those negative comments plaid into ‘insecurities’ that she had since childhood.
‘I certainly had insecurities growing up. That I was not gorgeous. I was not super pretty. The idea that that was the currency I was then meant to pursue, and I was meant to try and find ways of making myself prettier,’ she continued.
The Riches actress added that she was grateful that she resisted the pressure to have more cosmetic surgeries.
‘I thank God that I didn’t do a ton of stuff that I could have then gone and done … It could have been way more damaging than it was. I had such a lovely family going, “F*** that. You’re gorgeous on all these levels. And if one person doesn’t think that you’re pretty enough, f*** it.”‘
Painful experience: Driver also told The Cut that it was ‘devastating’ when another producer thought she wasn’t sexy enough; still from Good Will Hunting