For real?

Italian director wears ‘Weinstein is innocent’ T-shirt on red carpet

Screening of the film 'Suspiria' competing in the Venezia 75 section, Luciano Silighini Garagnani wears a T-shirt with a sign reading, 'Weinstein is innocent' during the Red Carpet Arrivals at the Venice Film Festival in Italy on September 1, 2018 (REUTERS/Tony Gentile)

An Italian director arrived at a Venice Film Festival premiere and created quite a spectacle wearing a black T-shirt emblazoned with a photo of Harvey Weinstein and the words “WEINSTEIN IS INNOCENT” written in block letters.

Luciano Silighini Garagnani, a “Conservative D-list Italian casting director turned filmmaker,” according to The Independent, pulled the stunt at the world premiere of Suspiria, a horror film starring Tilda Swinton, Dakota Johnson and Chloë Grace Moretz.

Garagnani is a supporter of Silvio Berlusconi; the director’s latest film put a positive spin on the notorious former Italian prime minister. Garagnani is reportedly also a supporter of the Republican party.

More than 80 women have accused Harvey Weinstein, once one of Hollywood’s most powerful producers, of sexual abuse. He has been charged with sex crimes and sex trafficking.

Garagnani’s red carpet display comes as a stark reminder of Italy’s slow embrace of the #MeToo movement, which was sparked by the allegations against Weinstein. Asia Argento, one of the first women to speak out against Weinstein, felt compelled to leave her native Italy after she was viciously condemned by the press there. (Argento has since been accused of sexually abusing a teenage boy in 2013.)

In recent weeks, critics have called attention to a marked gender disparity at the Venice Film Festival; of the 21 films in this year’s competition lineup, only one was directed by a woman. Venice subsequently signed a pledge, initiated at the Cannes Film Festival by the French organization 5050×2020, that calls for more transparency when it comes to the selection process. But, as The Hollywood Reporter notes, festival officials “appeared to sign the pledge begrudgingly, saying that the charter only re-confirmed policies the festival already had in place.”

Read the full story at The Independent.

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