Actor George Clooney has denied helping blacklist actress Vanessa Marquez after she complained about sexual and racial harassment on the set of the hit TV series ER. Marquez played Nurse Wendy Goldman on the first three years of the show’s 15-year run (1994-2009) on NBC.
Clooney’s role in the original ER cast as Dr. Doug Ross launched his A-list career. Marquez, however, appears to have just 23 acting credits on her IMDB page, and only six since she left ER in 1997.
Marquez took to Twitter this week to claim that Clooney participated in blacklisting her (i.e., preventing her from getting work in the entertainment industry) after she lodged an internal harassment complaint. She also claimed that the first question from ER executive producer John Wells was “did George do something to you?” Vanessa Marquez also maintains that she turned down a contract for ER Season 4 because “no check is worth that.”
In a statement, George Clooney seemed to shrug off the whole thing, Deadline Hollywood reported.
“I had no idea Vanessa was blacklisted. I take her at her word. I was not a writer or a producer or a director on that show. I had nothing to do with casting. I was an actor and only an actor. If she was told I was involved in any decision about her career then she was lied to. The fact that I couldn’t affect her career is only surpassed by the fact that I wouldn’t.”
In the immediate aftermath of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, in which the powerful movie mogul stands accused of a 30-year pattern of sexual harassment of starlets, staffers and other women in his orbit, the behavior of everyone in Hollywood seems to be under a microscope.
In a related tweet, Vanessa Marquez got specific about her allegations, the New York Post reported.
“She accused actor Eriq La Salle and a crew member of being ‘p—y grabbers’ and said racial abuse about her Mexican heritage came from ‘Anthony, Noah, Julianna,’ referring to cast members Anthony Edwards, Noah Wyle, and Julianna Margulies.”
In another tweet, Marquez claimed that George Clooney is “not who he pretends to be,” and that NBC, the Amblin Television company, Warner Bros., and the ER cast and crew, as well as her agents, were all complicit in the alleged blacklisting
Separately, although many celebrities were slow out of the gate in disavowing Harvey Weinstein, they are now speaking up, along with more of his alleged victims.
George Clooney told the Daily Beast that he was aware of rumors about Harvey Weinstein since the 1990s, but he took them with a grain salt. Given all the information that has come out since the New York Times expose last Thursday, he described Weinstein’s behavior as “indefensible,” but behavior that he never witnessed personally.
Clooney noted that he’s known Harvey Weinstein for 20 years and acknowledged that the mega-producer gave him his first big break in the movies for a starring role in the cult film From Dusk to Dawn (1996), directed by Robert Rodriguez and written (and co-starring) Quentin Tarantino.
George Clooney accuser Vanessa Marquez also implied that she’s been posting about the ER blacklist since the Billy Bush-Donald Trump Access Hollywood tape leak, but that no one on social media paid any attention until now.
[Featured Image by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP Images]