Dustin Hoffman got into a heated war of words with HBO host John Oliver on Monday night during a public Q&A session after Oliver questioned the actor about recent sexual harassment allegations that were made against him.
“You’ve made one statement in print — does that feel like enough to you?” Oliver asked in reference to an apology Hoffman made after he was publicly accused by a former production assistant in The Hollywood Reporter last month.
“First of all, it didn’t happen, the way she reported,” the actor said, according to Deadline.
To which Oliver replied, “It’s that part of the response to this stuff that pisses me off. It is reflective of who you were. You’ve given no evidence to show that it didn’t happen. There was a period of time when you were creeping around women. It feels like a cop-out to say, ‘Well, this isn’t me.’ Do you understand how that feels like a dismissal?”
Hoffman fired back, “You weren’t there.”
“I’m glad,” Oliver said.
The event — which was held to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Hoffman’s film “Wag the Dog” — lasted roughly an hour and was filled with heated exchanges, Deadline reports.
“You’ve put me on display here,” Hoffman told Oliver at one point. “You have indicted me … That’s not ‘innocent until proven guilty.’”
The actor repeatedly tried to blame the time period for his actions, saying the atmosphere was different back then when the alleged abuse occurred. This prompted Oliver to go back on the offensive.
“I don’t love that answer either,” the British comedian said.
“What response do you want?” Hoffman asked.
“It doesn’t feel self-reflective in the way it seems the incident demands,” replied Oliver.
“I get no pleasure from this conversation,” he added. “But you and I are not the victims here.”
Referencing reports in THR and Variety, Hoffman said: “Do you believe this stuff you’re reading?”
In response, Oliver flat-out said he did “because she would have no reason to lie.”
Moments later, a person in the crowd shouted: “Thank you for believing women.”
Source: Page Six (Chris Perez)
Photo Credit: IndieWire
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