Ashley Judd was one of the first women to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment by name. In the first Weinstein exposé from The New York Times, published on October 5, Judd shared her story of being invited for a business meeting with Weinstein that ended with her alone in his hotel room being asked to give him a massage and to watch him shower. Judd sat down with Diane Sawyer on Thursday’s “Good Morning America” for her first public interview since The Times story was published, and she had a surprising new message for the former studio head.
“I love you, and I understand that you are sick and suffering, and there is help for a guy like you, too, and it’s up to you to get that help,” Judd said.
The actress began the interview praising the over 60 women who have joined her in coming out publicly against Weinstein. Judd said it’s been an “absolutely, tremendously moving two and a half weeks.” She revealed that before the interview with The New York Times, she told her parents what she was about to do, and her mother had this to say to her: “Go get him.”
“I had no warning,” Judd said of Weinstein’s reputation for sexual harassment prior to meeting him. When she was told her business meeting with him would be taking place in his hotel room, her stomach dropped. But she decided to join Weinstein because, “I had a business appointment. That’s his pattern of sexual predation. That’s how he rolled.” The actress had no idea the “meeting” was just a disguise to get her alone with him.
When Sawyer asked Judd if Weinstein should go to jail, the actress responded: “If he’s a rapist, he should absolutely go to jail.”
But Judd remains hopeful for Weinstein: “I believe that there is hope and help for everyone. It has to be the appropriate help and there has to be a real, profound understanding on the part of the sexual predator, that what they were doing was wrong and criminal.”
Watch Judd’s entire interview with Diane Sawyer in the video below.