Casey Affleck poses in the press room with the Oscar for Best Actor during the 89th Annual Academy Awards on February 26, 2017, in Hollywood, California. Photograph:( AFP )
Casey Affleck, who won the best actor Oscar this year, has spoken about the sexual harassment allegations against him, saying "everyone deserves to be treated with respect in the workplace and anywhere else".
The actor was accused of sexual harassment by two female co-workers while making the 2010 mockumentary "I'm Still Here", which he directed.
Salon characterises the accusations as ranging from insisting that a female co-worker share his hotel room, to referring to women as "cows", to retaliating when his sexual advances were rejected.
Amanda White, according to a report by The Daily Beast, alleged that while working with Affleck on "I'm Still Here", she was once prevented from returning to her bedroom during shooting because Affleck and his brother-in-law Joaquin Phoenix locked themselves inside, in order to have sex with two women. (At the time, Affleck was then married with two children to Phoenix's sister, Summer. They have since split up.)
Elle reports that actress, Magdalene Gorka, complained that she woke up in a private room only to find Affleck "curled up next to her in bed wearing only his underwear and a T-shirt". When she managed to get Affleck out of her room, the report continues, he rallied crew members to harass and bully her until she quit the project.
The Daily Beast reports that Gorka, in a formal complaint, called her experience at the hands of Affleck, "the most traumatizing of her career". According to the complaint, Gorka continues to suffer from "humiliation, embarassment and emotional distress as a direct result of the harassment and abuse she enduring during the project". Gorka filed a lawsuit for $2.25 against Affleck.
Speaking to the Boston Globe, Affleck acknowledged the controversy that has dogged his awards-season run. "I believe that any kind of mistreatment of anyone for any reason is unacceptable and abhorrent, and everyone deserves to be treated with respect in the workplace and anywhere else."
He then responded to the criticism over his Academy Award win. "There's really nothing I can do about it, other than live my life the way I know I live it and to speak to what my own values are and how I try to live by them all the time," he said while addressing the people who condemned his win.
(With inputs from PTI)