Lucy Liu revealed over the summer that Bill Murray hurled “unacceptable and inexcusable” insults at her during the making of the 2000 action movie “Charlie’s Angels.” Now Liu’s co-star, Drew Barrymore, is opening up about the incident. During an episode of “The Drew Barrymore Show” this week (via The Independent), the talk show host said she reached out to Liu after the Murray story went public. Barrymore sent Liu a video to “back her up,” but Liu said she didn’t need proof and that Barrymore’s support was enough.
“What really happened was Bill was just in a — you know, comedians can be a little dark sometimes, and he just came in in a bad mood,” Barrymore said. “And what you have to know is how much Lucy stood up for herself and that was the great thing that came out of an unfortunate circumstance. She literally said, ‘I do not accept that kind of behavior from you.’ And we all supported her and backed her up and we moved forward.”
“In the workplace, it is so important that we respect each other, and if you don’t feel you’re being respected to speak up for yourself and to have people around you say, ‘I back this person,’” Barrymore continued. “I respected her then, I respect her now. I’m proud of us as a team and a company that we didn’t tiptoe on the eggshells. We dealt with it right then and there, we were strong, and we moved forward and we didn’t accept anything less moving forward.”
A long-standing rumor from the “Charlie’s Angels” set claimed that Murray dissed Liu as “a television actress.” Liu did not reveal the specifics of Murray’s behavior over the summer, other than saying he used “inexcusable and unacceptable” language.
“As we’re doing the scene, Bill starts to sort of hurl insults, and I won’t get into the specifics, but it kept going on and on,” Liu said. “I was, like, ‘Wow, he seems like he’s looking straight at me.’ I couldn’t believe that [the comments] could be towards me, because what do I have to do with anything majorly important at that time?“
Liu continued, “I literally do the look around my shoulder thing, like, who is he talking to behind me? I say, ‘I’m so sorry. Are you talking to me?’ And clearly he was, because then it started to become a one-on-one communication. Some of the language was inexcusable and unacceptable, and I was not going to just sit there and take it. So, yes, I stood up for myself, and I don’t regret it. Because no matter how low on the totem pole you may be or wherever you came from, there’s no need to condescend or to put other people down. And I would not stand down, and nor should I have.”
Whatever tension existed between Liu and Murray was eventually squashed. The two ran into each other during a “Saturday Night Live” reunion and Murray “was perfectly nice.”