Meryl Streep has opened up about the sexual misconduct scandal in Hollywood, and the criticisms she faced in the wake of allegations against producer Harvey Weinstein.

Speaking to The New York Times, Streep said she “really had to think,” before responding to the allegations against Weinstein, as it underlined her own sense of “cluelessness”.

Meryl StreepMeryl Streep at the Washington premiere of 'The Post'

When asked about her reaction to the Weinstein story Streep said, “I found out about this on a Friday and went home deep into my own life. And then somebody told me that on ‘Morning Joe’ they were screaming that I haven’t responded yet.

“I don’t have a Twitter thing or – handle, whatever. And I don’t have Facebook. I really had to think. Because it really underlined my own sense of cluelessness, and also how evil, deeply evil, and duplicitous, a person he was, yet such a champion of really great work.

“You make movies. You think you know everything about everybody. So much gossip. You don’t know anything. People are so inscrutable on a certain level. And it’s a shock,” Streep added. “Some of my favourite people have been brought down by this, and he’s not one of them.”

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Streep was also asked how she felt about people waiting for her to give a response. The actress said it shouldn’t have been her people were waiting to hear from, it should have been the women closest to the President, who has also faced sexual misconduct allegations.

“I don’t want to hear about the silence of me. I want to hear about the silence of Melania Trump,” Streep said. “I want to hear from her. She has so much that’s valuable to say. And so does Ivanka. I want her to speak now.”

As for how much she knew about Weinstein’s behaviour towards actresses, Streep reiterated that she knew nothing concrete.

“In terms of Harvey, I really didn’t know,” she said. “I did think he was having girlfriends. But when I heard rumours about actresses, I thought that that was a way of denigrating the actress and her ability to get the job.

“That really raised my hackles. I didn’t know that he was in any way abusing people. He never asked me to a hotel room. I don’t know how his life was conducted without people intimately knowing about it.”