Home / Top Story / Tony Tarantino addresses Hollywood sex abuse, his son's silence

Tony Tarantino addresses Hollywood sex abuse, his son's silence

Filmmaker Tony Tarantino understands why his Oscar-winning son Quentin stayed silent about movie mogul Harvey Weinstein’s alleged decades of sexual misconduct.

The elder Tarantino kept his mouth shut for nearly six decades about his own encounter with an influential Hollywood honcho who demanded sex for a career boost.

“You got to stop and realize, all these people (including Quentin), all their careers were made by Weinstein,” Tony Tarantino told the Daily News.

“(They) went from a nobody, no nothing, to a major star. So it’s much easier to turn a blind eye.”

Quentin Tarantino knew about Harvey Weinstein’s alleged assault

Tarantino, 77, says he was 20 years old when talent agent Henry Willson offered him acting opportunities and a lavish lifestyle in exchange for sex in 1960.

An up-and-coming actor at the time, Tarantino — who met Willson through actress Zasu Pitts — says the agent promised him a Cadillac, a new wardrobe and a place to live inside his home.

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As the cases against Weinstein piled up, Quentin Tarantino admitted he was aware of the allegations against his friend, mentor and frequent collaborator.

(Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

There was one creepy caveat.

“He says, ‘You will treat me like your best girlfriend.’ … I looked at him and said, ‘I don’t understand,'” Tarantino recalled.

Quentin Tarantino breaks silence on Harvey Weinstein allegations

“He explained in detail what he meant. He explained to me about oral sex … He explained to me about anal sex, and made that very clear.”

Shocked by the proposal, Tarantino claims he punched Willson in the face, dropping the agent to the ground.

“He got up, pulled a handkerchief out of his pocket, put it over his lip which was all bloody, and he said to me, ‘You’ll never work again in this town, so don’t even try,'” Tarantino said. “And don’t even think about New York either.”

Tarantino claims he was quickly fired from his role on the TV western series “Dick Powell’s Zane Grey Theatre.”

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He changed his name to Tony Maro and booked several acting gigs with Paramount as an extra, but claims he was thrown off the lot” within two hours once his true identity was discovered.

Six decades later, Hollywood is swamped by a tsunami of sex scandals, with dozens of women accusing Weinstein of sexual harassment, sexual assault and rape.

Scott Brunton, an ex-model and actor, came forward on Nov. 10, 2017, in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter to accuse "Star Trek" icon George Takei of sexual assault in Los Angeles in the 1980s.

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As the cases against Weinstein piled up, Quentin Tarantino admitted he was aware of the allegations against his friend, mentor and frequent collaborator.

“I wish I had taken responsibility for what I heard,” Quentin told The New York Times last month. “If I had done the work I should have done then, I would have had to not work with him.”

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The Tarantinos have not spoken to each other since October 2015, when Quentin referred to cops as “murderers” during a protest at Washington Square Park.

The angry elder Tarantino — who had four cousins in the NYPD — apologized to the cops for his son’s comments.

He later vowed to donate 10% of the profits from his upcoming film, “Prism,” to various United States police agencies.

But Tony Tarantino claims he ran into problems finding funding for the project, and believes his son and the Weinsteins are to blame.

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He says Wells Fargo originally expressed interest in helping him create “Prism,” but he believes the bank opted out last year after speaking to Quentin and the Weinsteins.

John Driscoll, Wells Fargo’s Vice President of Investments, told The News their decision to pass was financially driven.

Harvey Weinstein has been outed as a serial sexual predator.

Harvey Weinstein has been outed as a serial sexual predator.

(YANN COATSALIOU/AFP/Getty Images)

“His son Quentin’s movie, ‘The Hateful 8,’ lost so much money that the bank’s appetite (for investing) wasn’t there,” Driscoll said.

Driscoll said he knew nothing about any outside influences on Wells Fargo’s decision.

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A rep for The Weinstein Company said they were also unaware of any involvement by the Weinsteins with “Prism,” while a spokesperson for Harvey Weinstein said the same.

“Never heard of (the) movie, never heard of that title, and don’t know anything about Wells Fargo,” Quentin Tarantino said in a statement.

Willson, who died in 1978, was well-known as a sexual predator in Hollywood, according to author Robert Hofler, who wrote the 2005 book, “The Man Who Invented Rock Hudson: The Pretty Boys and Dirty Deals of Henry Willson.”

“To be a Henry Willson client you pretty much had to sleep with him,” Hofler told the Daily News.

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“The guys could say yes or no,” he continued. “I know of incidents where the guys would say, ‘No, but how about (oral sex)?’ And Henry would go, ‘Oh, OK.’ And everyone said he was true to his word. But it was very upfront. That’s what you had to do, or you could walk away.”

Tony Tarantino didn’t just walk away — something he still regrets nearly 60 years later. He regrets not offering a polite refusal rather than a throwing a punch.

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Willson, who died in 1978, was well-known as a sexual predator in Hollywood, according to author Robert Hofler.

(Fox/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock/Fox/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock)

And he urges young actors and actresses of today to reject the deviants of today.

“I’m thinking of all the young people out there,” he said. “Actors, actresses, people that are doing all they can to break into Hollywood to create a career. Then people like Harvey Weinstein … devastate these people.”

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quentin tarantino
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harvey weinstein

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