10/10/2017 9:12 PM AEDT | Updated 18/10/2017 1:46 AM AEDT

George Clooney Calls Harvey Weinstein's Misconduct 'Indefensible'

George Clooney has joined other powerful showbiz voices denouncing producer Harvey Weinstein’s alleged sexual misconduct.

It’s indefensible,” the actor told The Daily Beast on Monday. “That’s the only word you can start with.”

Weinstein, an Oscar-winning movie executive, preyed on women for decades, settling financially with at least eight who accused him of sexual harassment, according to a New York Times report.

Clooney noted that Weinstein gave him his “first big break” as an actor in “From Dusk Till Dawn,” and as a director on “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.” Clooney insisted he never knew Weinstein was a serial predator. 

“A lot of people are doing the ‘you had to know’ thing right now, and yes, if you’re asking if I knew that someone who was very powerful had a tendency to hit on young, beautiful women, sure,” Clooney said to the Daily Beast. “But I had no idea that it had gone to the level of having to pay off eight women for their silence, and that these women were threatened and victimized.”

Michael Kovac via Getty Images
George Clooney and Harvey Weinstein share a laugh in 2013. Clooney called the accusations against Weinstein "disturbing" in part because many people may have covered them up.

 A day after Meryl Streep told HuffPost that Weinstein’s actions were “inexcusable,” Clooney stepped up the criticism of Weinstein, who was fired this week from his own company. 

“It’s disturbing on a whole lot of levels, because there had to be a lot of people involved in covering that up,” Clooney said.

Visit The Daily Beast for the full story.

Evan Agostini via Getty Images
Weinstein and Clooney, pictured in 2005, collaborated on Clooney's directorial debut, "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind."