The director, who completed nine movies with Weinstein during his career, made the remarks during an interview with HBO’s Chris Wallace this week.
Weinstein is currently on trial in Los Angeles, pleading not guilty to multiple counts of rape and sexual assault involving various women. He’s already serving a 23-year prison sentence after being convicted of rape and sexual assault in New York.
The “Pulp Fiction” director previously said in 2017 that actor Mira Sorvino told him Weinstein had inappropriately touched her, with Tarantino adding at the time that “I knew enough to do more than I did” in response to the producer’s behavior.
But the filmmaker told Wallace this week that he never heard “any talk of rape or anything like that” regarding Weinstein, per Variety.
“I’d never heard the stories that later came out at all,” Tarantino said.
“I heard the same stories that everybody had heard. What I wish I had done was talk to Harvey about it and say, ‘Harvey, you can’t do this.’”
He added, “To tell you the truth, I chalked it up to a ‘Mad Men’-era version of the boss chasing the secretary around the desk” — a reference to the TV drama set in the 1960s. “I’m not saying that’s ok. That’s how I heard it... in that category.”
Tarantino said that he didn’t have such a conversation because he found the topic difficult to broach and didn’t want to deal with Weinstein’s “pathetic-ness.”
“I didn’t think it was, ‘Ok, you do this for me or you’re not going to get this movie.’ I never heard any actresses say anything like that,” Tarantino said.
“It was just you know, ‘Don’t get in the back of a limo with him.’ It was easy to compartmentalize that to some degree. Anyway, I feel bad about. What I feel bad about is I feel bad that I did not have a man-to-man talk with him about it.”
The filmmaker cut off ties with Weinstein following sexual harassment and assault allegations in 2017.
“I wish I had sat him down and had the uncomfortable conversation,” Tarantino said on the podcast. “I wish I had sat him down and gone: ‘Harvey, you can’t do this. You’re going to fuck up everything.’”
He added: “Maybe his brother, Bob, [did], but I don’t think anybody talked to him about it. And the thing about it is everybody who was in his orbit knew about it. ... Probably they didn’t know anything about rapes, but they had heard things.”