It was women sharing their experiences with Weinstein that made way for more victims to come forward with allegations against powerful men in the entertainment industry and beyond, revealing systems that seemed to, for years, insulate those men from any repercussions and silence their victims.
Weinstein flinched as he heard the description.
His lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, said he would fight to get the charges dismissed.
"We represent a lot of women who haven't spoken out yet as well", she said. He has denied ever having nonconsensual sex.
More than 70 women have accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct although the charges relate to only two of them.
They are the first criminal charges against the twice-married, shamed former titan, who already faces a slew of civil lawsuits, is reportedly under federal investigation and whose former studio has filed for bankruptcy.
He's accused of confining her in a Manhattan hotel room and raping her in 2013, according to a court complaint.
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The incident involving the other woman - Lucia Evans - involved a 2004 incident where "defendant forced informant to engage in oral sexual conduct, to wit, defendant grabbed the back of informant's head forcing her head downward and forcing her mouth onto his penis".
The Charmed actress sparked thousands of women to share their own stories of sexual harassment and abuse after the first allegations against the producer emerged.
Evans, now a marketing consultant, told The New Yorker that Weinstein approached her in a club in 2004 and that an assistant subsequently set up a daytime meeting at the Miramax office in Tribeca.
"I have to admit I didn't think I would see the day that he would have handcuffs on him", McGowan told GMA's Amy Robach in a pre-recorded segment.
"Anyone know where I can get front row seats?!"
"One of the hardest conversations I had over and over again with these courageous women was that in addition to the sacrifice they were making in telling this story, they didn't think they would ever be heard if they did take that leap, let alone to see actual accountability", he said.
Salma Hayek, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie are among more than two dozen actresses who say they were sexually harassed by the producer.
It's been seven months since the first reports of sexual misconduct appeared, and grew into the Me Too movement.
Weinstein, who's also being investigated in Los Angeles and London, also waived extradition to any other state or country. He can only travel in NY state and CT - and will have to seek approval from prosecutors to travel elsewhere. Tarana Burke, the activist who originated the rallying cry and hashtag #MeToo, spoke to Variety about Weinstein's then-impending arrest on Thursday.