Despite Oscar-nominated movie Lion collecting all 12 awards it was nominated for, it’s an ill moment from Wednesday night’s Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) awards that everyone is talking about.
Russell Crowe struck an off-note, which was cut from the televised broadcast as reported by The Guardian, during his presentation about the need for “sensitivity” in the industry. He somehow related that need for sensitivity to an anecdote about “sodomising” his female co-star Jacqueline McKenzie on set.
LISTEN: Mia on #MeToo: “The act of doing something publicly does make a difference”. (Post continues below…)
“I didn’t actually intend to do that – I was trying to keep my bits away from her bits, and she’s been given one of those pieces of elastic that the girls get when you do those scenes, which protects them from all things, and my bits and pieces were in a little canvas sack with a drawstring,” the Australian actor said about the sex-scene from the 1992 film Romper Stomper.
“And it was actually my desire to keep the bits apart. It wasn’t until the opening night of the film that it was pointed out by none other than Jackie McKenzie’s beautiful late mother that we were in fact, in her mind, engaged in sodomy. Anyway that was just a story about sensitivity!” the 53-year-old continued.
Just last week McKenzie joined the #MeToo movement, opening up on Facebook about the "grubby despicable behaviour" she herself has endured on set throughout her early career. The 50-year-old actress joins the spate of a growing list of women coming forward about their sexual harassment/sexual assault experiences in the entertainment industry.
Speaking to Guardian Australia last night prior to the ceremony, the Australian actress who was in attendance said, "It’s not just about sexual assault and harassment, it’s bullying and bad behaviour in the industry."
"In all industries, no matter what job, gender or age, it occurs everywhere. I posted on Facebook last week about my experience… I’m really interested in effecting some change now."
Since the binned moment, McKenzie has since responded to offbeat story on Twitter.
— jacqueline mckenzie (@JMcKenzie) December 7, 2017
"Russell was reflecting on the indignities of shooting a particular scene, in the R-rated indie film Romper Stomper... The very important conversation of sexual harassment in the workplace bares no relevance to this. There were no blurry lines on that awkward day back in 1991. As there should never be... The irony - what we actors are asked to do in scenes and how we actually film them - is what we laugh at. Then and now," she wrote.