Casey Affleck admits on the most recent episode of Dax Shepard’s “Armchair Expert” podcast that he gets nervous to talk about topics related to the #MeToo anti-harassment movement. Affleck, who settled two lawsuits in 2010 accusing him of sexual harassment on the set of his mockumentary film “I’m Still Here,” stressed that he is an ardent supporter of the #MeToo movement and the values it represents. The “Manchester by the Sea” Oscar winner said the idea of people not supporting #MeToo values is baffling.
“Who would not be supportive of the #MeToo movement? That’s an idea that’s even out there?” Affleck said. “That there are some people saying we do not believe in equality and we think the workplace should be a dangerous place for certain people and not for others. That’s preposterous.”
Affleck added that for him “it is very, very hard to talk about, and it scares me” to discuss topics related to the #MeToo movement. “Mostly because the values of the #MeToo movement are values that are at the heart of my being,” he added. “Just the way I was raised, they are baked into my own value system having been raised by a mother who didn’t let us watch ‘Dukes Of Hazard’ when we were like eight years old because it was sexist.”
“The way that I’m thought of sometimes by certain people recently has been so antithetical to who I really am that it’s been frustrating,” Affleck added. “And not being able to talk about it has been hard because I really wanted to support all of that, but I felt like the best thing to do was to just be quiet so I didn’t seem to be in opposition to something that I really wanted to champion.”
Affleck previously opened up to the Associated Press about being accused of sexual harassment, saying in an August 2018 interview that he “really regrets” the situation involved a civil lawsuit and admitting he behaved in a way that was “unprofessional.” Affleck detailed some of that unprofessionalism while talking to Shepard.
“There was a ton of partying, because that was the content of this documentary, at times mockumentary,” Affleck said. “We’re recording everything. It was confusing for everybody and it was deliberately so. And that’s my responsibility. The intention was to have the crew as a part of the movie. I don’t know how much they knew they were a part of the movie … It was a big mess and it’s not something I would do again. I would be way smarter, more sensible, more sensitive to it being a workplace if I were to try to do this again.”
Affleck’s latest directorial effort, the dystopian drama “Light of My Life,” is opening in theaters and on demand August 9 from Saban Films. The film stars Affleck as a father struggling to protect his daughter after a plague kills the rest of the world’s female population. The movie’s world-without-women setting has raised some eyebrows given Affleck’s history, although the actor-director maintained at the movie’s Berlin Film Festival premiere that the film is not a response to his harassment lawsuits.
“It’s not. I wrote this movie and made this movie before all of those things became part of the conversation,” Affleck said at the film’s Berlin press conference about the film being a response to his personal history. “I hope people keep their minds open and be responsible and measured in their reactions. And people can talk for themselves. It’s not something I can control.”