In a turn of events of poetic proportions, The Weinstein Company has been sold to a female-led investment company days after it appeared the studio was destined for bankruptcy.
Maria Contreras-Sweet announced that she and the Weinstein Company's board of directors reached an agreement Thursday for the purchase of assets to launch a new, female-led movie studio whose board of directors will be made up of a majority of women.
The deal, according to Deadline, would save about 150 jobs, protect the small businesses owed money by the company and create a fund to compensate victims of sexual harassment and abuse.
"This next step represents the best possible pathway to support victims and protect employees," Contreras-Sweet said in a statement.
Contreras-Sweet acknowledged the role of New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, whose civil rights lawsuit, filed on Feb. 10, threatened to derail the $500 million deal. The attorney general's office might agree to settle the suit if the victim's fund, proposed in a meeting last week, were created to compensate Harvey Weinstein’s alleged victims, among them actress Rose McGowan.
"We are grateful to the New York State Attorney General's office for their efforts in helping us reach an agreement and we are grateful to our investors who have believed in this process and in the compelling value of a female-led company," Contreras-Sweet said in a statement issued while she was still in the room.
Later Thursday the Board of Directors of The Weinstein Company confirmed the deal to sell the assets to the investment group ld by Contreras-Sweet and Ron Burkle.
"We are pleased to announce that we have entered into an agreement to sell the assets of The Weinstein Company to an investor group led by Maria Contreras-Sweet and Ron Burkle," the board said in a statement. "The deal provides a clear path for compensation for victims and protects the jobs of our employees. We greatly appreciate the efforts of Attorney General Schneiderman and his staff, Maria Contreras-Sweet, Ron Burkle and his team at Yucaipa for bringing about this agreement. We consider this to be a positive outcome under what have been incredibly difficult circumstances."