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"Tears of amazement." How Hollywood is reacting to Harvey Weinstein's 23 year sentence.

Harvey Weinstein will remain behind bars until he is 90.

The 67-year-old was sentenced in a Manhattan courtroom overnight to 23 years in prison for the sexual assault of former production assistant Mimi Haleyi, and rape of former aspiring actor Jessica Mann.

In a rambling statement, the former movie producer told the court: “I feel remorse for all of the men who are going through this fight”.

He added that he was “confused” and that he believed he had great times with “these people,” aka, the women who have accused him of misconduct of which there have been more than 100.

WATCH: Ambra secretly recorded Harvey Weinstein in 2015. Post continues after video.

Video by 60 Minutes

The once powerful Hollywood mogul is back in his cell on Rikers Island now, a place which he is apparently “miserable” in, according to Page Six.

He’s been there since February 24 when he was found guilty, and has only experienced a mere taste of the two decades to come.

As the news sinks in, the world is starting to react.

“Let us be free,” wrote actress Rose McGowan.

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McGowan is one of Weinstein’s most vocal accusers. She says he assaulted her at the Sundance Film Festival in 1997.

Last month when the initial verdict was read out, she wrote on Twitter: “Today is a powerful day and a huge step forward in our collective healing,” adding in a separate tweet that “I can finally exhale”.

She, like many of his alleged victims wasn’t expecting him to get time in the first place.

“Gratitude to Judge James Burke for not being able to be bought off like so many others through the years,” wrote fellow actress and accuser Rosanna Arquette.

“Gratitude to all the silence breakers especially Rose and all survivors of Weinstein. To the brave women who testified and to the incredible investigative reporting of Ronan Farrow who uncovered sabotage and spying,” she added.

Farrow, of the New Yorker, along with New York Times journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, broke the Weinstein stories in their respective publications in October 2017.

“A lot of news underlines how hard it is to hold wealthy and connected people accountable. Today’s shows the power of people who speak up, from a position of far less power, at great personal risk,” Farrow wrote on Twitter.

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“The Weinstein sentence reminds us of the importance of those sources and of leaders at news organisations who refused to kill the story.”

“In a letter to the judge this week, Weinstein’s attorneys said that reporting “destroyed” his life. In fact, it fairly parsed a mountain of evidence suggesting Weinstein’s actions accomplished that. I hope it encourages more people to speak and more outlets to back tough stories,” he concluded.

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Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey tweeted from the courtroom.

“Megan and I just witnessed it for ourselves. Weinstein was cuffed to his wheelchair then rolled away. The women who testified sobbed afterwards. Irwin Reiter, his accountant of 30 yrs who secretly helped us break the story, sat just behind,” wrote Kantor.

“The judge didn’t spell out why he gave Weinstein nearly the max. But consider this: in asking for leniency, the defense relied on arguments like: he helped other people win Oscars,” she added in a separate tweet.

Actress Mira Sorvino, another vocal accuser, spoke cried tears of amazement at the sentence.

“23 years. Harvey Weinstein has been sentenced to 23 years in prison for his crimes of rape and sexual assault. I literally cried tears of amazement, gratitude that the justice system has worked on behalf of his victims today,” she wrote.

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The Silence Breakers, a group of 24 of Weinstein’s accusers including actresses Rose McGowan, Ashley Judd and Rosanna Arquette, issued a statement following the verdict saying that “no amount of jail time” will lessen the impact on his victims.

“Harvey Weinstein’s legacy will always be that he’s a convicted rapist. He is going to jail – but no amount of jail time will repair the lives he ruined, the careers he destroyed, or the damage he has caused,” the statement read.

In court, the two women whose accusations put Weinstein behind bars gave victim impact statements before the sentence was read out.

“I showed up, not as a perfect victim, but as a human being,” said Miriam Haley, on why she testified. “I’ve never felt vengeful, and going into this, initially, I didn’t even feel anger. I just felt sad.”

“Today we can have a future vision where monsters no longer hide in our closets,” added Jessica Mann.

“Rape is not just one moment of penetration,” she said. “It is forever.”

Former aspiring actor Jessica Mann (left) and former production assistant Mimi Haleyi (right) leave court after the sentencing. Image: Getty.
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Colleagues from Hollywood have also taken to social media to commend the sentence.

"A historical moment today. I am so appreciative of the women and men who spoke up about the abuse and harassment they suffered at the hands of Harvey Weinstein," wrote Reese Witherspoon.

"This gives me renewed hope in the US justice system that due process works, survivors will be believed, and justice will be served."

"Harvey Weinstein sentenced to 23 years in jail. Congratulations to the incredible women who took this monster on, in spite of how maliciously he retaliated. You have made a huge leap forward for all women with this victory," said Jameela Jamil.

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"To the brave women who are survivors of Harvey Weinstein’s repugnant crimes - both those who were vocal publicly & those who suffered in silence. You, along with the journalists who covered the story, have changed the course of future histories," tweeted Monica Lewinsky.

Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi wrote: "This verdict would not have been possible ten or even five years ago. This is an historic day for women's equality and holding powerful men accountable for their actions."

"He was untouchable for years. He voraciously sexually attacked women without repercussions for years. His sentence serves as a warning to others like him that sex crimes will not continue to go unpunished," she added.

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Anthony Rapp, who made headlines in 2017 when he accused Kevin Spacey of making unwanted sexual advances toward him in 1986, wrote: "This is such incredible news.

"Again, I thank and honor the incredibly courageous women who came forward and started a conversation that has helped change the world for the better."

The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office has now started the extradition process for Weinstein to face sexual assault charges there.

-With AAP.

Feature image: Attorney Gloria Allred holds a sign with the verdict during a media briefing outside the courthouse. Images by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images.

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