Mere weeks after Michael Moore filed a lawsuit against the Weinsteins alleging that they cheated him out of Fahrenheit 9/11 profits, another former collaborator has stepped forward with their own accusations of Weinstein tomfoolery and skullduggery. In a 60-page, awesomely detailed claim filed today in the New York State Supreme Court, Hoodwinked filmmakers Brian Inerfeld and Tony Leech accuse Harvey and Bob Weinstein of paying them $500,000 in hush money to put off dealing with their $54 million-plus fraud lawsuit until after the Oscars, thereby preventing any of the publicity surrounding the case from negatively affecting The King’s Speech. Which, if true, mission accomplished!
In the original complaint (which you can read here), Inerfeld and Leech paint a story of the “out of control” Weinsteins’ attempts to “sabotage” their follow-up film, Escape From Planet Earth, telling a tale of “hubris, incompetence, profligate spending and contempt for contractual obligations” that goes so far as to call the Weinsteins a “a real life version of Bialystock & Bloom” from The Producers. Included are accusations that Harvey hired Kevin Bacon to be in the film, then paid him $25,000 to drop out once he decided he was “too expensive,” as well as charges that Weinsteins routinely fell asleep and worse during screenings—like a colorful anecdote about the time Harvey, a diabetic, “attempted to consume an entire bowl of M&M candies,” struggled with the studio executive who tried to take it away from him (“out of obvious concerns for Harvey Weinstein’s health”), spilled the whole thing in the commotion, and then, instead of watching the film, got down on his hands and knees and began eating M&Ms off the floor.
Naturally, the Weinsteins have already fired back, calling the lawsuit a frivolous and baseless attempt at extortion that “contains little more than false, gratuitous, slanderous, preposterous, and totally irrelevant personal attacks.” Funny ones, too.