NBC executives stepped in to slow-walk and then effectively kill their reporter Ronan Farrow's exclusive about the extent of the sexual assault allegations levied against Harvey Weinstein, according to a new report.
HuffPost reported Wednesday that in August, NBC executives issued an edict forbidding Farrow from continuing to report on accusations that Weinstein had committed rape and sexual harassment.
At that point, Farrow had already obtained a New York Police Department recording of Weinstein admitting that he sexually assaulted a model and was "used to" such behavior. Farrow also secured an on-camera interview with a woman who accused Weinstein of raping her.
At least 12 sources with direct knowledge of the matter told HuffPost that was well in line with what the outlet described as "a months-long struggle within NBC News during which [NBC News president Noah Oppenheim] and other executives slow-walked Farrow's story, crippling it with their qualms and irresolution."
Farrow was told his exclusive was not "television ready," despite interviews with at least four people accusing Weinstein of impropriety. But when he tried to publish the story on NBC News' website instead, he was told it was not possible.
When Farrow was finally ready to go forward with the story, he was told he needed explicit approval from NBC News chairman Andy Lack and NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke, a level of review unheard of in network news.
He never got it. Farrow finally asked for permission to take the story elsewhere, and it was published in the New Yorker a week after the New York Times broke the news.