Casey Affleck won the Best Actor prize for his role in the film Manchester by the Sea at Sunday night’s Oscars — but in the process, the actor waded into a storm of controversy and criticism from several left-leaning media outlets over previous allegations of sexual assault.
Most Hollywood insiders and media outlets already knew about the allegations concerning Affleck well before the Oscars. In 2010, the 41-year-old actor allegedly sexually harassed and physically assaulted producer Amanda White and cinematographer Magdalena Górka while directing the bizarre, Joaquin Phoenix-starring mockumentary I’m Still Here.
The women sued; White, who abandoned the project, accused the director of physically assaulting her after she refused to share a hotel room with him. Górka, who also reportedly left the film before shooting wrapped, alleged that she woke up in her room late one night to find a drunken Affleck in her bed, wearing nothing but underwear and a T-shirt. There were also accusations that Affleck had allegedly referred to women on set as “cows,” and encouraged a male crew member to flash his genitalia in White’s face.
Affleck vehemently denied the allegations. The two separate civil cases were closed and settled out of court after the director reached an undisclosed settlement with his accusers.
After he was handed the coveted Best Actor award Sunday, harsh criticism of Affleck and Hollywood’s sexist “Boys Club” flowed in from around the Internet on Monday.
“F*cking Creep Wins Oscar” is how Jezebel’s Joanna Rothkopf described his win.
“The Hollywood Boys Club That Supports Casey Affleck’s Oscar Nom Is A Total Disgrace” read one headline from a Huffington Post contributor.
One writer at Bustle saw the 41-year-old taking home one of the night’s most coveted prizes as an opportunity to explain, “What Casey Affleck’s Oscar Win Tells Us About Men In Positions Of Power.”
“Yes, on the surface, Affleck’s Oscar win means that his performance in Manchester by the Sea impressed enough Academy voters to beat out the other nominees,” Samantha Rullo wrote. “But what it really means is that men can be associated with claims of sexual harassment and still be held up as shining examples of excellence in their fields.”
There even appeared to be cutting criticism of Affleck from the Oscar stage.
Brie Larson, who won Best Actress last year for her role as a victim of abuse in Room, unceremoniously presented Affleck with his Best Actor award and refused to applaud the actor as he took center stage.
— Róisín Lanigan (@rosielanners) February 27, 2017
My aesthetic: Brie Larson not clapping for literal trash hole casey affleck pic.twitter.com/Ci5LWXLkCr
— Tyler Struble (@tyler_struble) February 27, 2017
Affleck wasn’t the only Manchester star to be awarded Sunday night; director and screenwriter Kenneth Lonergan won the Best Original Screenplay award. Actress Michelle Williams was nominated for Best Actress, and the film was also nominated for Best Picture, but ultimately lost the latter award to Moonlight.
For more from the Oscars, see the Breitbart News livewire.
Follow Jerome Hudson on Twitter: @JeromeEHudson