Journalist Ronan Farrow is finally providing a more detailed answer to why he took his reporting on Harvey Weinstein away from NBC News.
Farrow hinted when the story was published in The New Yorker last fall that executives at NBC News were less than amenable to publishing the piece. Just last week, former NBC investigative producer Rich McHugh claimed that NBC executives personally ordered him and Farrow to avoid interviewing one of Weinstein’s alleged victims and to stand down on the story altogether. (RELATED: Former Producer: NBC Execs Tried To Block Farrow’s Weinstein Investigation)
In response to a long memo sent to staff by NBC News chairman Andy Lack on Monday night, Farrow said that NBC is peddling “false or misleading statements.”
— Ronan Farrow (@RonanFarrow) September 4, 2018
Among the allegations in the letter, Lack states that Farrow had no on-the-record sources willing to accuse Weinstein of misconduct.
“We spent eight months pursuing the story, but at the end of that time, NBC News — like many others before us — still did have a single victim or witness willing to go on record,” Lack wrote.
1. The Chairman of NBC News Andy Lack has just sent a lengthy memo to staff re NBC’s role in @RonanFarrow @RichMcHughNBC‘s reporting on Harvey Weinstein. I will reproduce the cover letter and the memo in this thread. First, the cover letter. pic.twitter.com/EvotCM61yE
— Yashar Ali (@yashar) September 3, 2018
Farrow disputed that notion, writing, “Their list of sources is incomplete and omits women who were either identified in the NBC story or offered to be.”
He added, “The suggestion to take the story to another outlet was first raised by NBC, not me, and I took them up on it only after it became clear that I was being blocked from further reporting.”
Emily Nestor, a Weinstein accuser, backed up Farrow’s version of events, indicating that her and one other woman were willing to go on-record while the story was still at NBC.
“Ambra [Gutierrez] had always been willing to allow Farrow to identify her by name and use the recording of her, and I had filmed an interview in silhouette,” Nestor explained. “After Rose McGowan pulled out of the story … Farrow and I discussed and I had tentatively offered either to attach my name to the interview in silhouette or potentially even reshoot the interview with my face visible.”
— Yashar Ali (@yashar) September 4, 2018
“I feel forever indebted to Farrow for finding a platform from which my voice and the voices of other victims could be heard,” Nestor continued. “To attempt to impugn his character or his conduct in his tireless work to publish this story is shameful.”