In an elaborate ceremony last night, fat rage-eater Harvey Weinstein was re-annointed the vengeful God of Hollywood from the stage of the Golden Globes by High Priestess Meryl Streep.
It seems like only yesterday that Harvey Weinstein, the cruel bully responsible for unleashing Quentin Tarantino on the world, was teetering under the weight of karma, laid low and nearly bankrupt while Hollywood looked on with satisfaction at the rare spectacle of justice.
But there he was last night at the Golden Globes, fat and happy, bathing in that old mixture of fear and adulation from the assembled heavies while his films took six awards—three for The Artist, one for Iron Lady, one for W.E., and one for My Week With Marilyn. Michelle Williams hailed him from the stage at "the punisher." Streep venerated him: "I want to thank God—Harvey Weinstein. The punisher. Old Testament, I guess."
The Weinsteins took Best Picture last year at the Oscars with King's Speech, so Harvey has been back on top (or near it) for some time now. But you're not really back until everyone nervously sings your praises in a public forum as you gaze on with a look that could signal content or menace, depending on the lighting. That's what happened last night. Pretty soon, the bodies of those who betrayed Harvey while he was down will turn up hanging from light poles along the 405.
Until then, here's a look back at Harvey's journey through the wilderness and back, in timeline format.
October 2005: After a humiliating blow-up with parent company Disney, the Weinstein brothers leave Miramax and hang a shingle as the Weinstein Company, announcing $490 million in equity on top of a $500 million line of credit from Goldman Sachs.
2005 to 2007: TWC releases a host of terrible, terrible movies that nobody watches: Derailed, Transamerica, Clerks II, etc.
May 2006: TWC begins expanding beyond movies with an investment in ASmallWorld.com, a social network for rich people.
March 2007: Buys Halston, a fashion label.
February 7, 2008: Strikes a deal to move Project Runway from Bravo to Lifetime for a reported $150 million despite the fact that Bravo's parent company NBC Universal had the right to match Lifetime's bid.
April 7, 2008: NBC Universal sues over Project Runway, claiming breach of contract. TWC hires über-lawyer David Boies.
November 2008: Lays off 224 staffers worldwide.
February 2009: The Reader is inexplicably nominated for five Oscars and wins one; it pulls in $108 million worldwide on a $32 million budget, but fails to counterbalance all the duds.
April 1, 2009: TWC admits wrongdoing in Project Runway suit and pays NBC Universal to make it go away.
June 2009: Hires bankruptcy advisory firm Miller Buckfire to advise it on how to escape from its mountain of debt.
August 15, 2009: Humiliating New York Times profile portrays brothers as chastened and struggling to "regain their golden touch."
August 21, 2009: Inglourious Basterds opens to a healthy $38 million. But TWC has sold half the film to Universal, and so has to split the profits, which aren't enough to save it.
September 2009: Fails to repay $75 million bridge loan.
October 2009: Lays off 30 more staffers.
October 13, 2009: TWC unloads its stake in ASmallWorld.com.
November 2009: Disney decides to sell Miramax. Despite financial chaos, TWC teams with Ron Burkle to put together a $600 million bid.
December 2009: Highly anticipated Nine opens to dismal $5 million weekend.
January 2010: More layoffs.
March 4, 2010: Unauthorized: The Harvey Weinstein Project, a Canadian documentary portraying Harvey in an unfavorable light, secures $1 million in funding—the most stark signal yet that the Weinsteins no longer had the power to bully or buy their way to good publicity.
May 2010: After six months of negotiating, Disney rejects the Weinstein/Burkle bid for Miramax, forever dashing the brothers' hopes of regaining control of their old company.
June 2010: Weinsteins get a reprieve from Goldman on its $500 million debt. In exchange for Weinstein handing over control of its library of films, Goldman shaves $115 million off the debt, waives interest payments, and offers an extension.
December 2010: Disney closes sale of Miramax to investor group led by Ron Tutor.
February 2011: King's Speech wins four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and pulls in $414,000,000 worldwide on a $15 million budget.
March 2011: Triumphant Vanity Fair profile portrays brothers as chastened and struggling to "get their groove back."
March 3, 2011: TWC is sued for $114 million for "general incompetence" by two producers; the complaint alleges that Harvey paid hush money to delay suit until after the King's Speech Oscar campaign and accuses Harvey of eating M&M's off the floor.
July 14, 2011: TWC sells its stake in Halston.
January 15, 2012: The Artist sweeps the Golden Globes, winning the Weinsteins numerous hosannas from the stage and setting them up for another brilliantly and ruthlessly engineered Oscar campaign.
Tomorrow: The purges begin.
[Photoillustration by Jim Cooke; images via Getty.]