As the Harvey Weinstein scandal of alleged sexual harassment and assault has evolved in the last week, the one name that’s appeared more and more is former Miramax executive Fabrizio Lombardo.
Lombardo, who was the head of Miramax’s Italy office until it was closed in 2003, has been referred to as Weinstein’s Italian connection in multiple stories about his alleged sexual misconduct toward women that spans three decades.
Italian actress and director Asia Argento later confirmed on Twitter that he was the producer she referred to when recounting her alleged encounter with Weinstein in a hotel room in 1997 to The New Yorker.
Argento told The New Yorker that the producer (Lombardo) invited her to a party thrown by Miramax — the company founded by Harvey and his brother Bob before they formed The Weinstein Company in 2005 — at the Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc, on the French Riviera. Argento said she showed up, but the producer led her to a hotel room with only Weinstein in it. “I’m, like, ‘Where is the f—ing party?'” she recounted saying. The producer then told her, “Oh, we got here too early,” Argento told The New Yorker. Then he left her alone with Weinstein, she said, and subsequently Weinstein allegedly performed unwanted oral sex on her.
After the New Yorker story came out, Argento tweeted that Lombardo was the producer that brought her to Weinstein.
New Zealand model and writer Zoë Brock alleged that Lombardo was also among the men that left her alone with Weinstein while they were in his hotel room during the Cannes Film Festival in 1997. Brock said when she was alone with Weinstein, he took his clothes off and asked her for a massage. She ran into a bathroom to escape, she said.
Brock alleged that Lombardo was one of the people in Weinstein’s circle who would “hunt” women for him.
“I did not hunt for him,” Lombardo told The Guardian, in his first interview about the scandal. “It is not my style … it is not my relationship with Weinstein.”
Lombardo added that he could not recall ever meeting Brock and denied bringing Argento to Weinstein’s hotel room, or having any knowledge of Weinstein’s alleged sexual misconduct. He did admit that he introduced Weinstein to “countless” people, but said Weinstein didn’t need his help to meet women.
“He can pick up the phone and have lunch or dinner with whoever he wants,” Lombardo said.
Despite not having contact with Argento for years, according to The Guardian, Lombardo contacted her the day after the New York Times story on Weinstein.
Lombardo sent Argento two messages on Whatsapp that he claimed were sent to her by mistake. In one, a man wakes up next to a woman in bed and attempts to leave what he believes is a bad one-night stand, only to realise she’s his wife. In the other, former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi — known for his “bunga bunga” sex parties — is pictured with a car and a licence plate that reads “escort.”
Argento tweeted them:
Lombardo told The Guardian that those messages were intended for a friend he often sends memes to.
“I sent it by mistake,” he said. “Maybe hers was close to another name.”
According to a New York Times story in 2004, Miramax paid Lombardo for months after its Italy office closed, despite Lombardo having another full-time job at the time at a real estate company.
Fabrizio Lombardo brought me to Weinstein’s room when I was 21 in ’97. He told me it was a Miramax party. Only Harvey was there.
— Asia Argento (@AsiaArgento) October 11, 2017
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