Is Matt Damon’s cameo in “Ocean’s 8” about to land on the cutting room floor?
An online petition requesting that the film’s producers, George Clooney and Steven Soderbergh, remove Damon’s scene had garnered more than 27,000 signatures on Tuesday. The goal is 30,000 signatures. The petition was spurred by Damon’s recent comments on Hollywood’s sexual harassment scandal and his alleged involvement in an attempt to kill a story about Harvey Weinstein’s history of sexual misconduct.
“Damon’s inclusion would trivialize the serious nature of the charges against sexual abusers like Weinstein — a show of massive disrespect for the brave women speaking out,” read the petition.
It further stated that Damon’s appearance in the mostly-female “Ocean’s” reboot starring Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett would show a “lack of accountability for sexual harassment in the workplace that four in ten American women experience.”
The Damon controversy began when he was interviewed about Hollywood’s sex scandal on ABC News’ “Popcorn with Peter Travers.” He remarked: “We’re going to have to figure — you know, there’s a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right?”
He went on to say: “Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated.”
In addition, The Wrap founder Sharon Waxman alleged that Damon and Russell Crowe meddled in a 2004 New York Times piece she was preparing about Weinstein and former head of Miramax Italy, Fabrizio Lombardo. Waxman claimed that Damon and Crowe called her “directly” to vouch for Lombardo. The Times never ran the story. Damon has denied her allegations.
News also broke over the holiday weekend that the actor’s father, Kent Damon, had died on Dec. 14 at age 74. Kent Damon, who had been battling cancer for several years, died as a result of complications from multiple myeloma, a blood disease that affects the bone marrow, Matt Damon’s rep Jennifer Allen told The Associated Press on Saturday.