Why the tide is turning against Hollywood golden boy Ben Affleck.

The tide is turning on Ben Affleck.

In the land below the big, bright Hollywood sign perched on the Hollywood hills, lies a world where sexual harassment is rife, and women have money but no power.

And as disgraced accused rapist and sexual harasser Harvey Weinstein goes to ground, one thing remains glaringly obvious: Hollywood has a problem with men, and those men have a problem with knowing how to treat and respect women.

Last week, Ben Affleck joined other prominent Hollywood personalities denouncing Weinstein, posting on Facebook that he was “saddened and angry that a man who I worked with used his position of power to intimidate, sexually harass and manipulate many women over decades”.

Instead of drawing support, his passionate post inspired numerous women to come forward with accusations against Affleck himself.

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Here, it is important to note that Ben Affleck has long been a colleague and protege of Weinstein’s. He rose to fame in Harvey Weinstein’s Miramax film Good Will Hunting in 1997, which he wrote with Matt Damon, and won an Oscar for Best Screenplay.

Since then, he worked with Weinstein on Shakepeare in Love and Jersey Girl. The pair had worked closely together for years.

After Affleck’s Facebook post condemning Weinstein, Rose McGowan that he “lied”. He knew all about the accusations around Weinstein, she said, despite his claims the allegations “make [him] sick”.

“’Goddamnit! I told him to stop doing that!’ you said that to my face. The press conf I was made to go to after assault [sic]. You lie,” McGowan wrote on Twitter.


Next, it was actress Hilarie Burton, who was reminded by a fan about a time on MTV’s Total Request Live in 2003 when Affleck groped on her on screen.

“He also grabbed Hilarie Burton’s breasts on TRL once. Everyone forgot though,” one Twitter user wrote.

“I didn’t forget,” she replied, adding she “had to laugh back then so [I] wouldn’t cry”.

Shortly after, a video from 2004 was unearthed, showing the actor asking Canadian journalist Anne-Marie Losique to expose herself while she sits on his lap in a press junket for Jersey Girl – a Weinstein and Miramax film.

“These breasts are really firm, suspiciously firm, they are like two giant stones,” he says to her in the video. Touching her nipples, he went on to suggest they recreate a “Janet Jackson” moment.

Image: Getty.

In the wake of the video re-emerging, Losique, it should be noted, told The Hollywood Reporter the footage had been taken out of "context".

"It was for a show I was producing, so I was not at all a victim."

Then came makeup artist Annamarie Tendler who tweeted, "I would also love to get an apology from Ben Affleck who grabbed my a-- at a Golden Globes party in 2014."

Of all of the fuss and frenzy, Affleck has only acknowledged Burton.

“I acted inappropriately toward Mrs. Burton and I sincerely apologise,” he wrote.

It's Affleck's name and reputation cushioned next to the names of men like Weinstein. The same Hollywood golden boy that has pranced, with boyish-like charm, on our movie screens for over 20 years may not just be complicit in Hollywood's dirty secret, but part of the overarching problem.

A year-and-a-half ago, in an interview with Vanity Fair, a quote from Affleck's ex-wife Jennifer Garner gave us insight into the Affleck we hadn't ever seen, nor met, until this year.

"I always say, ‘When his sun shines on you, you feel it'," she told the magazine at the time. "But when the sun is shining elsewhere, it’s cold. He can cast quite a shadow.” He is a "complicated guy", she went on to say. Brilliant, charismatic, generous, the love of her life. But complicated.

Ben Affleck - the actor - grew up in the glow of fame.

At just 12, he was starring on our TV screens. At 25, he had won an Academy Award for his screenplay for Good Will Hunting. In the 90s and early 2000s, he had on his arm an assembly of famously beautiful women: Gwenyth Paltrow and Jennifer Lopez were some of his early loves, Garner came later as a notably steadying force in his life.

But his self-confessed addiction to alcohol, an alleged affair that may have sunk his marriage and fresh assault accusations from women in Hollywood are coming to a head.

Now, he's reportedly checked himself into a rehab clinic for alcohol addiction.

The charming, smiley, goofy, clean-shaven Oscar winner now has obvious streaks of darkness coming to the surface.

The tide is certainly turning against Ben Affleck. But what that means for an actor accused of sexual assault in 2017 remains to be seen.