Long before we knew Harvey Weinstein as an alleged serial rapist, we knew him as a volatile bully who verbally abused his employees and ran a company with an unfathomably toxic culture. He would throw things at people, fire executives on the spot, and call interns “fuckface.”
His behavior was tolerated at The Weinstein Company, because that name was thought to be golden for one’s resume. But the all-powerful Weinstein was also deeply feared. It turned out that was a big clue as to what was happening behind closed doors. As a feminist legal scholar told the New Yorker, his alleged sex crimes represent “dominance laced with personal contempt.”
The Weinstein Company legacy is tainted, but the woman who appears likely to be its new lead investor, Maria Contreras-Sweet, may just build a company that will be more “woke” than any other in Hollywood. Contreras-Sweet is a former Small Business Administrator during the Obama administration, a veteran banking executive, and immigrant from Guadalajara, Mexico, and she’s reportedly planning to make some changes.
The Wrap, a Hollywood news site, is reporting that the company is due for an extreme makeover, citing “an insider” familiar with the plans. Here’s what we can apparently expect:
- A new name. Firms have pitched “Wonder Hill (site of the Hollywood sign), Assembly Hall, or Creative Trade Studios
- A fresh space. The company is moving from its now haunted Beverly Hills offices to a “luxe space” in L.A.’s Larchmont Village area
- A women-led board. It’s unclear whether the women Contreras-Sweet is currently interviewing would replace or augment sitting board members, but the Wrap’s source said, “Of the new board, the insider said they were “women you know and admire.” Under Weinstein, the board, called “the ultimate shit show,” was all male, but the new owner’s plan would result in a company 51% owned by women.
- Free food. The company will provide three free per day to staffers
- Literal transparency. The office will be designed as a more open work space, and eliminate the spacious private offices/hideaways
- Breastfeeding rooms. A small touch that speaks volumes about the way the company would support its female executives.
“It’s going from one furthest extreme to the other,” the unnamed source told The Wrap.
In one way, however, there would be little change: Current president, David Glasser, is expected to be named CEO of the remade firm, and its current CFO, David Hutkin, would become COO.
That’s two dudes named David in the top positions.