Casey Affleck’s name came up in conversations about #MeToo and Time’s Up, due to those misconduct allegations from 2010. But that’s not how Casey wanted to be involved, because Casey supports women. I’m sure Brie Larson is rushing to the phone to call and congratulate him as we speak.
People magazine says that Casey got into it during a recent appearance on Dax Shepard’s Armchair Expert podcast. Remember how Casey has written, directed, and is starring in a new movie called Light of My Life, about a man who lives to protect his daughter, the only female left on earth? He talked about his new movie with Dax, which of course led to a conversation about Casey’s sketchy history with women. And that turned into Casey outing himself as a closeted #MeToo ally. Between this and that movie, this is all starting to feel like a pseudo-documentary follow-up to I’m Still Here starring Casey called I’m Still Here Doing Lots of Damage Control.
The first Academy Awards ceremony in the wake of #MeToo and Time’s Up was a big one. Usually whoever won the Oscar for Best Actor in the previous year comes back to present Best Actress (and vice-versa). But the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences clearly realized the optics of having accused workplace sexual harasser Casey Affleck present a women with an award didn’t look so good, and they got Jodie Foster and Jennifer Lawrence to do it instead. Casey remained pretty quiet during the whole thing, until now.
Casey now says he kept his mouth shut because he knew people would give him shit for it. He also says that he wanted to speak up so badly, because he “couldn’t imagine” not being supportive of the #MeToo movement, saying the values of the moment were the values he was raised with.
“The way that I’m thought of sometimes by certain people recently has been so antithetical to who I really am that it’s been frustrating. And not being able to talk about it has been hard because I really wanted to support all of that, but I felt like the best thing to do was to just be quiet so I didn’t seem to be in opposition to something that I really wanted to champion. It’s a tough spot to be in, especially if you really do appreciate and want to be in support of the side that seems angriest and the anger’s directed at you. And I sort of decided, ‘Well I’ll just stay quiet mostly.’
It’s not my experience but you have to respect that someone else had an experience and take that to heart and allow for it to be as possible as your memory of that experience.”
Casey adds that he was lumped in with some other accusers, even if he wasn’t allegedly as bad as, let’s say, the Harvey Weinsteins of the industry. But he says it provides a bigger, more important conversation about the systematic abuse.
“I think there is some truth in that, you know, it isn’t about, ‘This isn’t so bad and that’s really horrible.’ It’s that it is systematic, it’s accepted culturally at its tamest manifestation of it and at its worst, and it all needs to be turned on its head, eradicated and not allowed for. And that kind of lightning bolt I think is effective.”
And even though his accusers aren’t allowed to talk about what allegedly happened during the filming of I’m Still Here (they settled out of court and signed NDAs), Casey is talking. The filming of I’m Still Here was a bigger mess than Joaquin Phoenix’s beard at the time. Casey knows he fucked up steering that ship.
“There was a ton of partying, because that was the content of this documentary, at times mockumentary. We’re recording everything. It was confusing for everybody and it was deliberately so. And that’s my responsibility. The intention was to have the crew as a part of the movie…It was a big mess and it’s not something I would do again. I would be way smarter, more sensible, more sensitive to it being a workplace if I were to try to do this again.
You have to be open to people be saying, ‘No man you’re not hearing us. That was out of control to run a movie set that way. That was wrong.'”
Casey ends by saying he doesn’t think he’ll ever get closure on the situation, at least until after he “punches the big clock.” And I guess at that point, he’ll be forced to face it in the afterlife? That’s if any of the angels want to volunteer for such a crappy job. I can already picture several female angels texting God that they’re busy that day washing their wings.