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Sam Elliott Apologizes for Antigay, Sexist ‘Power of the Dog’ Rant

Author: Trudy Ring

Sam Elliott has apologized for homophobic comments he made about the acclaimed movie The Power of the Dog.

On the WTF With Marc Maron podcast March 1, veteran actor Elliott called the film a “piece of shit” and said star Benedict Cumberbatch’s conflicted gay character in the 1920s-set Western drama resembled a Chippendales dancer. “That’s what all these fucking cowboys in that movie look like. They’re all running around in chaps and no shirts,” Elliott said. “There’s all these allusions to homosexuality throughout the fucking movie.”

Elliott was asked about the rant Sunday when appearing on a panel promoting his drama series 1883, now streaming on Paramount+. At the Contenders TV event, sponsored by news website Deadline, he began his answer by saying, half-jokingly, “First, don’t do a podcast with the call letters WTF.”  

“I told the WTF podcaster that I thought Jane Campion was a brilliant director, and I want to apologize to the cast of The Power of the Dog, brilliant actors all,” he continued in video posted by Deadline. “And in particular Benedict Cumberbatch. I can only say that I’m sorry and I am. I am.”

“In trying to tell the WTF guy how I felt about the film, I wasn’t very articulate about it. I didn’t articulate it very well,” Elliott said. “And I said some things that hurt people, and I feel terrible about that. The gay community has been incredible to me my entire career. And I mean my entire career, from before I got started in this town. Friends on every level and every job description up until today with my agent, my dear friend, my agent of a number of years. I’m sorry I hurt any of those friends and someone that I loved. And anyone else by the words that I used.” He did not name his agent, but the website for talent agency MN2S says Elliott is represented by its founder, Sharron Elkabas.

On the podcast, Elliott had also disparaged director Jane Campion, who ended up winning the Best Director Oscar for the film. “What the fuck does this woman — she’s a brilliant director, by the way, I love her work, previous work — but what the fuck does this woman from down there, New Zealand, know about the American West?” he said at the time. “And why in the fuck does she shoot this movie in New Zealand and call it Montana and say, ‘This is the way it was.’ That fucking rubbed me the wrong way, pal.”

Campion had responded by noting to The Hollywood Reporter that Elliott, while he has appeared in many Westerns, is “not a cowboy either, he’s an actor.” She said, “He was being a bit of a b-i-t-c-h. … We’re dealing in a fictional world, we’re dealing in a mythic universe. The West is a myth, it doesn’t exist — Annie Proulx said that — and there’s a lot of room on the range to explore that myth. And this is just another version of it.” She further told Deadline, “He’s really hit the trifecta of misogyny and xenophobia and homophobia.” There’s no record yet of any comment from Campion on Elliott’s apology.

Also at the Deadline panel, Faith Hill, who appears with Elliott in 1883, said he showed “amazing character” on the set and was quick to apologize for anything he though had offended anyone, “Whatever is was, if he stepped on a toe or knocked off a hat.” She added, “We love Sam!”

Original Article on The Advocate
Author: Trudy Ring

My name is David but my online nick almost everywhere is Altabear. I'm a web developer, graphic artist and outspoken human rights (and by extension, mens rights) advocate. Married to my gorgeous husband for 10 years, together for 24 and living with our partner of 1.5 years, in beautiful Edmonton, Canada.

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