Dame Judi Dench speaks out about Harvey Weinstein

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Actresses are speaking out in support of the women who came forward to detail alleged sexual harassment committed by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, including Meryl Streep, who called the reports "inexcusable".

Weinstein was sacked from The Weinstein Company, the film company he co-founded, days after a New York Times investigation detailed numerous incidents of alleged sexual harassment by the media mogul over a period of three decades.

Streep was also nominated for a best actress Oscar for the 2013 film "August: Osage County", which Weinstein executive produced.

According to the Times story, Weinstein has reached at least eight legal settlements with women over allegations of sexual harassment, with his accusers including actresses Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan.

"Not everybody knew. Harvey supported the work fiercely, was exasperating but respectful with me in our working relationship and with many others with whom he worked professionally", Streep said, stressing that she did not know about the alleged incidents.

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"The intrepid women who raised their voices to expose this abuse are our heroes", she said. Hollywood's power is dying because society has changed and grown, and yet Hollywood male behavior has not. "Each fearless voice that is raised, heard, and credited by our watchdog media will ultimately change the game", Streep concluded.

Last week, Weinstein was accused of a series of sexual harassments and assaults by a number of women over a number of decades.

Streep said she did not know about any alleged offences.

He tweeted: "If even 1/10th of the stories about Harvey Weinstein are true (and I believe they are), then good f**king riddance".

They continued to work for the firm until 2005 when they quit to set up The Weinstein Company, which spawned hits including The King's Speech, Django Unchained and Silver Linings Playbook. The Times, while acting on the request of anonymity, reported that he paid a "young assistant" in NY in 1990, an actress seven years later, an assistant the year following and a model in 2015.

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He said: "I came of age in the 60s and 70s, when all the rules about behaviour and workplaces were different". Besides Robert Weinstein, Lance Maerov, Richard Koenigsberg and Tarak Ben Ammar - who were cited in the release firing Weinstein - the board comprised of the 65-year-old Harvey Weinstein himself and Lasry, Sarnoff, Ziff and Tudor Jones.

Weinstein and his brother, Bob, founded the film distributor Miramax, named after their parents, Miriam and Max, in 1979.

Weinstein, a long-time backer of the Democrats in the USA, also made legal threats against the New York Times in the wake of its allegations.

"I have resigned as an advisor to Harvey Weinstein", Bloom tweeted Saturday.

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