Amongst all the incredible outfits on the 2018 Met Gala red carpet yesterday, you might have neglected to notice why Scarlett Johansson’s dress was controversial.
The actress wore a gown by Marchesa, the label founded by Harvey Weinstein’s wife Georgina Chapman, making her the first high-profile star to do so since it was revealed Weinstein was a serial sexual harasser and abuser.
It’s a confounding choice for Scarlett, a supporter of the Time’s Up movement, since Weinstein intimidated women into wearing Marchesa gowns on the red carpet.
After The Hollywood Reporter claimed Weinstein threatened to pull funding from Felicity Huffman’s 2005 film Transamerica unless she wore Marchesa to red carpet events, the Desperate Housewives star told TooFab “It’s true”.
Huffman’s stylist Kevan Hall elaborated to The Hollywood Reporter:
“I was disappointed when she told me that she could not wear my gown for her nomination for Transamerica because the ‘godfather’ said she had to wear ‘his girlfriend’s collection.’”
An anonymous publicist told THR Huffman was not the only actress who had her career threatened unless she wore Marchesa. Sienna Miller also faced the same situation when she found out she’d be sitting with Weinstein at the Golden Globes.
Sienna reportedly preferred another gown for the red carpet event but was told Weinstein “would be very upset if she didn’t wear Marchesa.”
The publicist said Weinstein’s bullying is the main reason his wife’s label succeeded.
“He was the mastermind behind Marchesa — orchestrating deals and using his influence in terms of the celebrity connections for her on behalf of the brand,” also saying of Harvey and Georgina “they both benefited from the relationship, but she certainly knew about his bad behaviour.”
Could the reasoning behind Johansson’s decision be that Georgina shouldn’t be punished for her husband’s sins? She’s yet to explain the move. Watch this space.