Peter Jackson says Weinsteins blacklisted Judd, Sorvino

Peter Jackson

Director Peter Jackson alleges Harvey Weinstein blacklisted Mira Sorvino, Ashley Judd

Terry Zwigoff, who made the 2003 film Bad Santa, said overnight that he was potentially looking to cast Sorvino in a key role, but that he was prevented from doing so by the Weinsteins, who were then in charge of production house Miramax.

Now, Peter Jackson fills in the gaps.

It began with Sorvino commenting on Peter Jackson saying people at Miramax had talked him out of using the her and Ashley Judd in his "Lord of the Rings" movies. "While Ashley was the top choice for Miramax and Mr. Weinstein, the role went to Minnie Driver, who was the star and director's preference", the statement says. Both actresses have claimed their careers were ruined by Weinstein after they spurned his unwanted sexual advances.

He said: "I recall Miramax telling us they were a nightmare to work with and we should avoid them at all costs".

Judd was among the first wave of women to expose Weinstein as an alleged serial predator in a New York Times article published back in October.

"Just seeing this after I awoke, I burst out crying", Sorvino tweeted on Friday. "This was probably in 1998", he told the site.

If Ashley Judd said she was in conversations with Mr. Jackson and reviewed sketches, it was under New Line, which had casting authority, not Miramax.

Jackson and Weinstein had worked together blockbuster hit series of three films - The Lord of the Rings.

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The actor did not reveal whether the producer retaliated in any way, and has not claimed he had any other interactions with Weinstein.

"At the time, we had no reason to question what these guys were telling us..."

Three-time Oscar victor Jackson, who described Weinstein and his brother, Bob Weinstein, as "behaving like second-rate Mafia bullies", also said he feuded with the studio about the number of films in the franchise and has chosen not to work with the brothers since.

Fran Walsh was in the same meeting, and remembers these negative comments about Ashley and Mira as clearly as I do. "There was no indication that Mira Sorvino had any issues until Mr. Weinstein read about the complaints in the news". "I now suspect we were fed false information about both of these talented women - and as a direct result their names were removed from our casting list", he added.

Weinstein threatened to sack Jackson from the LoTR adaptation if the director didn't follow Weinstein's demands to make the proposed two-part film into one.

Weinstein said he had nothing to do with the casting of "Lord of the Rings".

Weinstein cast Judd in two subsequent films - "Frida" (2002) and "Crossing Over" (2009) - and Sorvino was also considered for other films, the spokesman added.

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