‘Dirty Dancing: Havana Knights’ choreographer testifies she has no memory of dancer sexually assaulting Harvey Weinstein

Harvey Weinstein’s defense called out the choreographer from the 2004 movie “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” to answer questions about a dancer from the film, a witness testifying in the Los Angeles trial. The dancer alleged that she was sexually assaulted by Weinstein during the production of the musical, which was produced by his company, Miramax.

Choreographer JoAnn Jansen was called in by Weinstein’s defense team to take the stage on Monday afternoon. She was the lead choreographer on the 2004 film, which was a reimagining of the hit original film, “Dirty Dancing,” and worked on a total of four Weinstein films.

Jansen said she did not remember any meeting with Ashley Matthau, the non-accused witness at the trial. Matao booked a small role as a dancer in the sequel to Dirty Dancing. During her testimony, she alleged that she was assaulted in 2003 when Weinstein masturbated to her in his hotel room in Puerto Rico. Matthau, who was 22 at the time, said Weinstein wanted to discuss “future projects” with her. I agreed to go to the hotel because his assistant was with him and I assumed it would be a business meeting. When they reached his room, his assistant had abandoned it.

Matthau told jurors that she confided in the presence of a choreographer and producer on set, but said neither offered any assistance. Matau did not name this choreographer during her testimony, so it is unclear if she was referring to Jansen or someone else.

During Jansen’s testimony on Monday, she said she was not aware of Matthau’s work on the film at all. The choreographer said there were 50-75 dancers hired and claimed to know them all. When she was shown a photo of Matao, she didn’t recognize her.

Jansen also told the defense that no women filed any complaints about Weinstein during production.

“Has any dancer ever met you to express any concern?” asked Weinstein’s attorney, Mark Werksman. Jansen replied, “No.” She said she would have remembered if she had been informed of such concern.

Werksman also asked if any of the dancers on set were “in distress” about any encounters with Weinstein, and Jansen said, “No.”

When questioned by the prosecutor, Deputy DA Marlene Martinez, Jansen said she would get to know every dancer she works with. “I know this sounds strange, but I did it.”

Then the prosecutor showed Jansen the IMDb pages of “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” and Jansen said she recognized everyone in the cast, except for Matthau. “She was credited as a dancer, but you don’t know her?” Janssen replied, “No.”

The prosecutor then proceeded to ask about another dancer in the film: Claudia Salinas, a model and influencer who testified earlier in the trial after being accused of helping Weinstein trap a woman in the hotel bathroom where she was allegedly assaulted. Salinas disputed any involvement in the alleged incident and denied any wrongdoing, but her name appeared several times during the trial as an alleged accomplice with Weinstein.

When asked about Salinas, Jansen immediately recognized the name. When asked about Salinas’ relationship with Weinstein, Jansen appeared uncomfortable and the prosecutor replied, “I don’t know.” Janssen said it didn’t work for her and said, laughing, “I don’t know why, but I already know her.”

Jansen noted that Salinas was an “extra dance” and said she did not hire her. When Martinez asked if she interacted with any of the dance extras, Jansen said, “No, I’m not allowed to,” citing SAG rules that state she is only able to interact with the lead dancers. Martinez then asked, “Do you know all the dance extras?” And Jansen said, “No.” Martinez suggested that the matao may have been an extra dance.

Jansen — whose choreographic credits include “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,” “Uptown Girls,” “Shall We Dance” and “Avatar” — was the fourth witness called by the defense. Weinstein’s attorneys intend to call two more witnesses before resting their case this week.

Matao’s lawyer responded diverseHe asked for comment Monday evening, in response to Jansen’s testimony.

Attorney Elisabeth Fagin of Fagin Scott said in an email to: diverse. “If the defense argued that it did not exist, they would be lying to the court and jury.”

Closing arguments at Weinstein’s trial are expected to occur this week. The judge indicated that the case will likely be in jury hands by the end of the week.


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