Throughout this Harvey Weinstein-era reckoning, we’ve seen all kinds of responses from men accused of sexual misconduct, from apologies to denials and everything in between.
This week actor Dustin Hoffman gave perhaps the most cringe-worthy, defiant and cliched response we’ve seen so far when he was pressed by late show host John Oliver during a Q&A at an anniversary screening of the film Wag the Dog.
Last month LA writer Anna Graham Hunter accused Hoffman of groping her and making inappropriate comments when she was a 17-year-old intern on the set of 1985’s Death of a Salesman.
Listen: Mia and Amelia praised John Oliver for his attitude. (Post continues.)
In response, Hoffman told The Hollywood Reporter, “I have the utmost respect for women and feel terrible that anything I might have done could have put her in an uncomfortable situation. I am sorry. It is not reflective of who I am.”
Oliver, like so many of us, drew ire from the sorry-if-I-offended-you style statement and chose to take the opportunity to question the 80-year-old on it.
And he did not hold back.
“It’s ‘not reflective of who I am’ — it’s that kind of response to this stuff that pisses me off,” Oliver said after Hoffman emphasised the implied “if” in his original statement.
“Because it is reflective of who you were. If you’ve given no evidence to show it didn’t [happen] then there was a period of time for a while when you were a creeper around women. It feels like a cop-out to say ‘It wasn’t me.’ Do you understand how that feels like a dismissal?”
Hoffman responded by saying it was “difficult to answer that question” and attempting to explain the climate of the set, saying questions like “did you have sex on Friday?” were thrown around all the time.