Monday, September 28, 2020
Gwyneth Paltrow Adds Afterthought to Harvey Weinstein Case at SV Film Festival
Gwyneth Paltrow was continually amused by the large-screen pictures appearing behind her during Sunday’s Coffee Talk sponsored by Zions Bank.
Tuesday, March 20, 2018


Gwyneth Paltrow made headlines in October 2017 when she told the New York Times how Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein had put his hands on her, suggesting they head to his bedroom for massages after giving her a starring role in his film adaptation of Jane Austen’s “Emma.”

She told her boyfriend Brad Pitt, who confronted Weinstein, and the producer immediately warned her not to tell anyone, scaring her that she might be fired.

“To be honest, I’m still trying to process a lot of that,” Paltrow told about 360 people packed into the Sun Valley Opera House Sunday for a free Sun Valley Film Festival Coffee Talk sponsored by Zions Bank.

Gwyneth Paltrow said recalled skiing in Sun Valley with her family on numerous occasions.

But, she added, “Harvey Weinstein had an incredible gift for finding talent, for supporting great screenplays, great actors. We tend to throw the baby out with the bath water. It’s far more complicated than that. I’m proud of the work that I did during that time. Art remains art, and I’m proud of the art that I put in the world then.”

Paltrow was honored by the Sun Valley Film Festival Saturday night at Sun Valley’s Roundhouse Restaurant with the Vision Award given to industry icons that have provided keen insight, influence and initiative to fulfill their creative vision. Others who have received the award are Clint Eastwood, Oliver Stone and Geena Davis.

On Sunday morning the 45-year-old actress took her place on the Opera House stage, wearing a grey pinstripe skirt slit thigh high along with black and red Christian Louboutin boots that were also slit at the side.

Her moderator Dave Karger recalled first meeting Paltrow on a set near London while writing for “Entertainment Weekly” 18 years earlier. He showed up at a trailer where Paltrow met him in pajamas since she was about to film a night scene.

Gwyneth Paltrow met fellow actress Demi Moore at the Sun Valley Opera House. PHOTO: Getty Images courtesy Sun Valley Film Festival

“I had lunch with her—the first and only macrobiotic meal in my life,” he said.

Acting is in Paltrow’s genes. Her father Bruce Paltrow produced “The White Shadow” and “St. Elsewhere,” as well as “Duets,” which starred his daughter. Her mother, Blythe Danner starred in such movies as “The Prince of Tides” and won a Tony Award for her performance in “Butterflies are Free.”

Gwyneth Paltrow recounted auditioning behind her parents’ backs.

“I was like a horse. I just wanted to gallop and try it.”

Gwyneth Paltrow, a second cousin of former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, advocated a traditional cleanse going without caffeine, alcohol, white sugar and dairy, for those seeking more energy.

After a few small roles in the musical romance “Shout” starring John Travolta and as Wendy Darling in Steven Spielberg’s “Hook,” she got her first plum role in the noir drama “Flesh and Bone.”

“It was not a successful film, but I got some recognition,” she said, recalling her review as “a scene stealer who has her mother’s way of making a camera fall in love with her.” “It was stunning for me to have that recognition. I thought, ‘Oh great, I’m off to the races now.’ Then I didn’t get another part for two years.”

When she did, she found herself playing the wife of a young detective played by Brad Pitt in “Se7en,” about a serial killer who used seven deadly sins as tropes. Then came “Emma” and “Shakespeare in Love,” both of which required impeccable English accents.

“My accents were based on crank calls I used to do in high school,” she said. “I was always the one doing prank calls with various accents. I suppose that was a foreshadowing. And I worked with a voice coach all the time. It was hard work, but it was great.”

Paltrow won the Academy Award for Best Actress in 1999 for her role as the fictional lover of William Shakespeare in “Shakespeare in Love.”

Winning the Oscar was kind of a blur, coming at a time when her grandfather was dying and her father was being treated for throat cancer.

“It’s really overwhelming to have the whole world focused on you,” she said.

Paltrow said she was amazed with the way the film wove inside jokes about Shakespeare into the play.

“It was the most perfect screenplay I’d ever seen,” she said. “You can have a great screenplay and it doesn’t turn out to be a great movie. We thought we were making a tiny art house film—we had no idea it would end up becoming what it did.”

Working with Wes Anderson on “ 'The Royal Tenenbaums' was also incredible, she said.

“The fastidiousness, the execution of detail from the color of the hair to the eyeliner and fur coat... Having someone direct you who has that level of specificity--I thought, ‘I just want to fulfill your vision of this person as best I can.’ ”

In 2008 a skeptical Paltrow agreed to play Pepper Potts in “Iron Man.” It ended up being her highest-grossing film until “The Avengers” in 2012. She has appeared in eight Marvel Comic films, including  “Avengers: Infinity War,” which is still to come out.

“I decided I shouldn’t write it off because it’s a comic book. Jon (Favreau) was able to legitimize these comic book movies and make them really good movies.”

Paltrow took a step back from acting when she had her two children. Apple is now 13 and Moses, 11.

“It changed me completely when I had my daughter. I thought, ‘I’m never leaving the house again,’ ” she said. “Motherhood has taught me that anything that remains unresolved from your life will pop up so it’s important to try to heal things from your own life.

“I feel like I was born the day they were born,” she added.

Paltrow said she was fortunate to be able to take time off to stay home with her children. And she has no qualms about asking for help.

“I’m willing to ask for help when I need help. As women we do something really punitive to ourselves. If I ask for help it means I’m a bad X, Y, Z. We do need help. And I’ve learned as I’ve grown older that vulnerability is key.”

A health and wellness guru, Paltrow launched a weekly lifestyle newsletter “Goop”—so-named for her initials G.P.—in 2008. It now markets skincare products, supplements, perfumes, books and apparel.

“I had no idea what I was getting into. But to employ 150, mostly women, is very fulfilling. It’s one of the proudest aspects of my life,” said Paltrow, who also has authored three best-selling cookbooks.

She also recently launched her first podcast under her Goop lifestyle brand with Oprah Winfrey her first guest.

“It’s such an honor to sit with Oprah and ask her questions.”

Paltrow who was divorced in 2016, recently announced her engagement to “Glee” producer Brad Falchuck. He is co-creating a new TV series called “The Politician” that Paltrow hinted she might be roped into.

She added that it’s an interesting time to get into Hollywood.

“People are being considered based on how many Instagram followers they have,” she said. “That’s completely antithetical but it’s modern. For me, it’s about the craft.  If you have a passion for the craft of acting, if you learn it and work hard, if you start out in a theater, take it seriously, if you talented—and if you have three million Instagram followers—that’s the recipe for success.”

Paltrow said she’s encouraged by the increasing number of opportunities for women filmmakers.

“It’s weird when you have so few women, so few women of color, so few men of color behind the camera,” she said. “But that’s changing. And there’s a lot of license to expand. I’m thrilled about what is happening.”

Paltrow’s appearance won rave reviews from the audience.

“I thought she was very poised and very authentic. And she was not afraid to laugh at herself,” said Marie Gallo.

“I admit I was ambivalent about her before,” added Maija Eerkes. “But I was impressed. She was so genuine.”


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