Back in November, Uma Thurman called the women speaking out against Harvey Weinstein "commendable," and said that she was " waiting to feel less angry" before sharing her own story. "When I'm ready," she told an Access Hollywood reporter, "I'll say what I have to say."
Thurman is ready now, and her accounts — of Weinstein forcing himself on her, and of her Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill director, Quentin Tarantino, putting her safety at risk on set — are disturbing, to say the very least.
In a new conversation with the New York Times, Thurman recalled the sexual misconduct she faced from Weinstein and an awful accident on the set of Kill Bill. Thurman, Tarantino, and Weinstein worked together on multiple films: Weinstein's Miramax produced her star-making turn in Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill's Volumes 1 and 2, and Weinstein's first inappropriate advance took place before they all started working together on the two-part action saga.
"It was such a bat to the head," she told the Times, recounting one Weinstein instant at London's Savoy Hotel. "He pushed me down. He tried to shove himself on me. He tried to expose himself. He did all kinds of unpleasant things..."
As for Tarantino, Thurman described how the director confronted Weinstein about his inappropriate conduct, which forced an apology from the producer before production commenced on Kill Bill. She then walked the Times through the car crash: Tarantino wanted her to speed down a winding, sandy road in a convertible that didn't appear to be safe. She wanted a stuntman to do it, but he insisted she get behind the wheel: “‘Hit 40 miles per hour or your hair won’t blow the right way and I’ll make you do it again.’" Thurman crashed the car, and she was understandably furious.
"When I came back from the hospital in a neck brace with my knees damaged and a large massive egg on my head and a concussion, I wanted to see the car and I was very upset," she said. "Quentin and I had an enormous fight, and I accused him of trying to kill me. And he was very angry at that, I guess understandably, because he didn’t feel he had tried to kill me.”
Miramax wouldn't give Thurman footage from the crash, initially, and the incident permanently fractured her creative relationship with Tarantino. "We were in a terrible fight for years,” she said. "We had a fateful fight at Soho House in New York in 2004 and we were shouting at each other because he wouldn’t let me see the footage and he told me that was what they had all decided." He eventually gave her the footage, which the Times included in their story.
"Quentin finally atoned by giving it to me after 15 years, right?" she added. "Not that it matters now, with my permanently damaged neck and my screwed-up knees."
Thurman concludes by stressing how violating both Weinstein's actions and the crash nightmare felt. "Harvey assaulted me but that didn’t kill me,” she said.
"What really got me about the crash was that it was a cheap shot. I had been through so many rings of fire by that point. I had really always felt a connection to the greater good in my work with Quentin and most of what I allowed to happen to me and what I participated in was kind of like a horrible mud wrestle with a very angry brother...
"Personally, it has taken me 47 years to stop calling people who are mean to you ‘in love’ with you," she continued. "It took a long time because I think that as little girls we are conditioned to believe that cruelty and love somehow have a connection and that is like the sort of era that we need to evolve out of."