Weinstein sacked over sexual harassment allegations

The film producer's lawyer, Lisa Bloom, has also quit representing him

Weinstein sacked over sexual harassment allegations

File photo of Harvey Weinstein at a conference in Pasadena, California, 06-01-2017. Image: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP File

Filmmaker Harvey Weinstein has been sacked by his own company following fresh sexual harassment allegations against him.

The Weinstein Company said in an emailed statement that its co-chairman was no longer employed - effective immediately.

The board of directors made the decision "in light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days," the statement said.

Leave of absence

Weinstein, 65, had previously taken a voluntary leave of absence after decades of sexual harassment claims were detailed in the New York Times last week.

The company's board had approved that decision on Friday but went further on Sunday, removing him from the company he co-founded.

Also on Sunday, US President Donald Trump got involved, saying he was "not at all surprised" to see the allegations of sexual misconduct made against Weinstein.

As he boarded a helicopter at the White House, the US President told reporters: "I've known Harvey Weinstein a long time... I'm not at all surprised to see it."

Locker room

The comments coincide with the anniversary of the publication of the 2005 Access Hollywood video in which Mr Trump boasted about grabbing women's genitals.

The President again dismissed the tape's contents as typical male bragging, saying - as he did at the time - "that is locker room."

His intervention comes after Weinstein's latest accuser, TV presenter Lauren Sivan, claimed he cornered her in a Manhattan restaurant in 2007 and tried to kiss her.

When she refused, he said: "Well, can you just stand there and shut up." He then allegedly performed a sex act in front of her.

She joins other women, including actors Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan, in accusing the film producer of sexual harassment stretching back years.

Legal representation

In another blow to Weinstein, his lawyer, Lisa Bloom, has quit representing him.

In a statement issued on Thursday, he apologised for his conduct, saying: "I appreciate the way I've behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologise for it.

"Though I'm trying to do better, I know I have a long way to go."

The Academy Award winner formed independent movie studio Miramax in 1979 with his brother Bob, selling it in 1993 and setting up The Weinstein Company in 2005.