The fallout from the recent Harvey Weinstein revelations (and the Kevin Spacey revelations, and the James Toback revelations, and the Roman Polanski revelations, the list rolls on…) continues apace. Filmmaker Cameron Bossert has taken to the internet to launch a new petition asking the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to ban recent Oscar winner Casey Affleck from this year’s Oscar ceremony, due to previous allegations of sexual harassment waged against the “Manchester by the Sea” actor.
The recently launched petition — available on Change.org’s platform and titled “Don’t let Casey Affleck participate in the 2018 Oscars” — is addressed to both AMPAS and its newly elected president John Bailey. The petition is currently seeking 1,000 signatures and, as of this writing, was hovering just below 600 signees.
Bossert writes, “In light of the revelations that Harvey Weinstein has been sexually harassing and assaulting women for decades, the Academy Awards recently voted to strip Weinstein of his membership – but did you know that another accused sexual harasser is set to participate in the 2018 ceremony?”
He continues, “Last year despite multiple sexual harassment claims against him, Casey Affleck won the Best Actor award for this role in ‘Manchester by the Sea.’ He had been accused of sexual harassment by two women who worked with him on a 2010 documentary. The women alleged that Affleck sent them threatening texts, demanded that they share a hotel room with him, and locked one of them out of her room so that he and Joaquin Phoenix could use it to have sex with two other women.”
The claims that Bossert references resulted in two lawsuits against Affleck by cinematographer Magdalena Górka and producer Amanda White alleging sexual harassment on the set of his 2010 mockumentary “I’m Still Here.” Affleck denied the allegations and both cases were settled out of court.
As Bossert notes, Affleck will inevitably be on hand at this year’s ceremony, as it is the awards ceremony’s tradition that last year’s Best Actor presents the award to this year’s Best Actress. For Bossert, that’s not acceptable any longer. “With so many credible accusations against him, the Academy should take action against Affleck and ban him from participating in the ceremony,” he writes. “Presenting an award at the Oscars is an honor that Casey Affleck does not deserve. Tell the Academy to do the right thing this year.”
For a rising filmmaker like Bossert (whose credits include the upcoming “Jewtah,” along with “The Last 48” and the series “Dinner With Mom”), the petition comes from a personal place. He writes, “As a burgeoning film maker, I want to know that the industry I am entering respects and protects everyone, no matter their gender. Movies are better when made by a diverse crew – and that won’t happen if women keep getting harassed in at work. Let’s stop honoring people like Weinstein and Affleck and hold them accountable for their actions.”
You can view the petition right here.