An online petition to remove Matt Damon from the female-centered “Ocean’s 8” after his controversial comments about sexual harassment and assault in the industry has reached more than 18,000 signatures — just shy of its “goal” of 19,000.
“Damon’s inclusion would trivialize the serious nature of the charges against sexual abusers like Weinstein, a show massive disrespect for the brave women speaking out. It would also send a terrible message about the inevitability of — and lack of accountability for — sexual harassment in the workplace that four in ten American women experience,” the petition read.
Damon faced serious criticism after an interview with ABC News in which he proved he does not understand the #MeToo movement.
The star defended Louis C.K. and tried to say that some harassment is worse than other harassment.
“There’s a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right?” Damon said in a new interview with ABC News’ Peter Travers. “Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated without question, but they shouldn’t be conflated, right?” the 47-year-old said in the interview, which was quickly condemned as tone-deaf.
The actor further put his foot in his mouth when he gave another interview to Business Insider in which he said he would work with accused harassers depending on the story.
He worked with Harvey Weinstein in the past, including on his breakout movie “Good Will Hunting” with pal Ben Affleck.
Damon’s cameo in the upcoming Ocean 8 film, due out in June, has been highly publicized.