Harvey Weinstein Allegedly Took $600K From An AIDS Charity To Pay Off His Personal Debt

 

Harvey Weinstein’s malicious web of deceit spreads far wider than any of us could have possibly imagined. The disgraced former film executive is now said to have taken $600,000 of donations from an amfAR AIDS benefit gala to pay off a debt he owed to the American Repertory Theater, according to an explosive new report by The Huffington Post. 

Weinstein had invested in the ART’s production of the musical Finding Neverland, and, as a condition of investment, the theater “would reimburse Weinstein and other show investors for money they put into the trial run, provided the investors got third parties to donate the amounts.”

So Weinstein owed $600K to ART, and needed to have the funds in their acconut by June 1, 2015 or the money would not come back to him.

Enter the amfAR gala, which Weinstein agreed to help procure prizes and A-list guests for in exchange for taking half of the proceeds to give to the ART. He made this deal with the gala’s non-executive chairman Kenneth Cole. They had decided to split the proceeds of the benefit 50/50.

Each of the prizes donated were free: Weinstein procured a “Hollywood experience” package, with tickets to an Oscars party, as well as a photo session with Mario Testino. They raised $909,669 – instead of splitting that down the middle, though, Weinstein still took $600K, well over half – to pay off the ART. But since the money from the auction had yet to be collected from those who’d purchased the gifts, Weinstein had to wire amfAR $600K from his own personal account on the condition amfAR pay ART by June 1.

An email from amfAR CEO Kevin Frost explains the organization’s misgivings with the Weinstein deal:

“I’m going on record on here to express my concerns about this whole process. I have expressed to Kenneth [Cole] that I don’t believe amfAR should execute this transfer of funds prior to hearing a judgement from our auditors. Nothing about this deal feels right to me and I believe we have not done due diligence to understand exactly what this money is being directed to or why amfAR is being used to facilitate these transfers. Kenneth has heard my concerns and despite that is directing amfAR to execute this transfer to ART in fulfillment of an agreement he made with Harvey Weinstein.”

When an investigation began into Weinstein and Cole’s proceedings through this transaction, Weinstein reportedly offered to make a $1 million dollar donation to amfAR over the course of five years on the condition each board member sign a nondisclosure agreement.

21 Hottest Looks from the Cannes amfAR Gala Cinema Against AIDS

David Gandy at the amfAR 22nd Cinema Against AIDS. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

Each year, the amfAR gala rallies celebrities and wealthy do-gooders to support research for the global AIDS crisis. Celebrities are never ones to shy away from donating to charity, and they raised over $30 million (!) at Thursday evening’s art auction and gala in Cannes. Bonafide art aficionado Leonardo DiCaprio donated a Banksy to the auction that sold for 986,000 euros — nearly $1.1 million. Appropriately so, the stars were out in celebratory fashion. From David Gandy (above) looking handsome as always, to super models like Karlie Kloss, Isabeli Fontana, Joan Smalls, and more, all stunning as ever, check out 21 of the hottest looks from the Cannes amfAR Gala.

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Isabeli Fontana. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Joan Smalls. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Jourdan Dunn. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Karlie Kloss. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Karolina Kurkova. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Mary J. Blige. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Rita Ora. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Sara 
Sampaio. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Shanina Shaik. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Sienna Miller. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Tom Ford. Photo: BFAnyc.com

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Toni Garnn. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Zoe Kravitz. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Adriana Lima. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Aishwarya Rai. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Anja Rubik. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Bella Hadid. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Chanel Iman. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Daphne Groenveld. Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAnyc.com

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Gigi Hadid: Photo: Matteo Prandoni/BFAyc.com

 

6 Surreal Things That Happened at Cannes (via Instagram)

Another Cannes Film Festival has come and gone, proving that over-the-top glamour is still very much prevalent in the land of ridiculously rich people, aka the French Riviera. And it’s not just movie stars; models, musicians, beauty brands and even bloggers got in on the decadent action this year, too. From amfAR’s annual gala to P. Diddy’s yacht party on steroids, here are some of my favorite FOMO-inducing moments captured by everyone’s favorite photo sharing mobile app, Instagram.

1. Theophilus London chilled with footwear god Giuseppe Zanotti at dinner one night and got him to do what you’re seeing above.

2. amFAR held their annual Cinema Against AIDS gala, where supermodels and superbloggers mingled, like Doutzen Kroes and Rumi Neely:

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3. P. Diddy hosted a crazy party on a monster yacht:

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4. L’Oreal Paris set up a fancy beauty suite to help pretty people get even more pretty, like athlete/actress/model Aimee Mullins

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5. Supermodel Anja Rubik threw a party for erotic fashion rag 25 Magazine, which her fellow supermodel friends flocked to:

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6. Just for good measure, here’s a lasting FML shot of a gold freakin’ Mercedes that someone drove to the amFAR gala:

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What To Keep In Mind This Memorial Day Weekend (Slideshow Inside)

And suddenly it’s summer. Memorial Day weekend will happen mostly elsewhere, but I love the empty city and will use the time to relax, reflect, and regroup. I most note the death of Robin Gibb reportedly from a cancer which could have been treated if only he had taken a test. I had no contact with Mr. Gibbs. I once tried to book the Bee Gees for the Palladium for New Year’s Eve, but my high offer was about one-third their low. The loss of Robin Gibbs, Donna Summer, and Adam Yauch from cancer way before any reasonable expectation of life sends a shudder through me. There are no guarantees, there are no guarantees. I do believe the rain will stop and this summer will be hot, Al Gore-hot, but the now-keener awareness of my immortality is embracing the rain and all the other miracles I enjoy every day.

I almost went to Vienna this year for the Life Ball. It was held in Vienna, Austria at its City Hall last Saturday, May 19th. The world’s flamboyant, fabulous, and fierce gathered as they have for the last 20 years. Party planner Kevin Crawford tried to coax me to go with him and his, but alas, I couldn’t swing it. His entourage included my dear friend Marko Kalfa, who sent me these wonderful photos. Around us, people are still suffering from AIDS. People are dying far before their time. From the amFAR website:

"Life Ball is the world’s most extravagant HIV/AIDS benefit. Held annually in Vienna, Austria, Life Ball combines the great Viennese Ball tradition with glamorous, outlandish performances and inspirational speeches. Organized by the AIDS Life Association, Life Ball has raised more than $22 million during the past 19 years for HIV/AIDS projects worldwide through partnerships with amfAR, the William J. Clinton Foundation, the Elton John AIDS Foundation, and UNAIDS. Through the Life Ball, the AIDS Life Association has been a major supporter of amfAR’s TREAT Asia Pediatric HIV/AIDS Initiative."

This year, Life Ball celebrated its twentieth anniversary under the banner “Fight the Flames of Ignorance.” Attending Life Ball for the first time, Milla Jovovich was amfAR’s representative. “For me, Life Ball is about solidarity,” she said. “It’s a wonderful example of how people and organizations coming together can change the world.

As you head out into the weekend and all its glory, think preemptively, and think of how precious life is and drive slow… be safe and have fun. Talk to you Tuesday.