One of the producers Uma Thurman blames for her car crash on the set of Kill Bill is speaking out. Veteran producer Lawrence Bender says he regrets the accident, but denies that there was any cover-up.
A few days ago, The New York Times published an article detailing accusations of sexual misconduct by disgraced media mogul Harvey Weinstein against the Kill Bill star. Also included in the article was an account of a car crash that occurred during the making of the 2003 film. The article revealed that Thurman was pressured by director Quentin Tarantino to do a driving stunt, despite having misgivings about her safety. Her concerns were ignored and she was told to shoot the scene anyway. As a result, Thurman's neck and knees were permanently injured. Video has been released that shows the crash.
Following the article's publication, Thurman posted on Instagram that she holds executive producer Weinstein, and producers E. Bennett Walsh and Lawrence Bender "solely responsible" for what happened. Thurman says that the three men lied and destroyed evidence to keep the crash a secret. According to the actress, the "unforgivable" cover-up had "malicious intent." Bender has pushed back at the suggestion of a cover-up in a statement to THR. Bender says he "deeply regrets" the accident that hurt her both physically and emotionally, but denies any involvement in a cover-up:
I never hid anything from Uma or anyone else nor did I participate in any cover up of any kind - and I never would.
Bender claims that he was informed of Uma's feelings on the matter months ago and he has tried to provide her with all the answers she's been seeking. It's unclear if there was indeed a cover-up. Thurman reportedly had a great deal of difficulty exposing the video of the crash. For years she wasn't allowed to see it, and after contacting Tarantino, they were able to recover the 15-year-old footage from a storage facility.
Thurman says Tarantino helped her expose the footage even though he was aware that it could cause him personal harm. In Tarantino's response to the incident, the director called the accident "the biggest regret of [his] life" and noted its impact on his relationship with Thurman. However, Tarantino didn't acknowledge or deny the existence of a cover-up.
We will have to wait and see how Walsh and Weinstein respond to the accusations.