Olivia Munn Says Fox “Chastised” Her for Going Public with The Predator Sex Offender Casting
The saga of Olivia Munn and The Predator‘s predator Steven Wilder Striegel continues, with Munn appearing as a guest on Ellen. In the interview, Munn discusses the fallout of her speaking out against the casting of a convicted sex offender, which led to her co-stars ditching joint interviews and remaining silent during the Toronto International Film Festival press tour and film premiere. Afterwards, co-stars quickly came out of the woodwork to support Munn, as they should have.
Munn said that since making the story public, she has received messages of encouragement online: “The public, social media, fans, strangers on the street, all of the news outlets have been extremely supportive and that’s such a gift because it’s not an easy situation to be in.” Once Munn found out about Striegel’s past, she took it upon herself to let her co-stars know what happened, which pissed off 20th Century Fox.
“It was going to be something that got out there, so I wanted to give my costars a heads-up so that they wouldn’t be blindsided like I was. When I did call my costars, I got chastised the next day by the studio for telling them, and ‘Why am I just not keeping it quiet? It’s all going to be OK. It got deleted. What’s the big deal?’ And I said, ‘Well, it happened.'”
Fox’s response is as upsetting as it is predictable, especially in the cultural context of the #MeToo era. Isn’t the culture of silencing and shaming what got us here in the first place? The fact that they would rather silence and chastise Munn than hold Shane Black accountable for casting such a liability speaks to the larger issue at the crux of reporting sexual harassment: the victim-blaming mentality. By holding Munn accountable for simply sharing information with her colleagues, they are painting her as the bad guy, as opposed to the convicted sex offender or the man who hired him and then didn’t disclose it to his actors.
She summed it up best by saying, “The reality is that the people that collude to keep people like this in positions of power, that’s the real problem. The people who keep turning blind eyes.” This tacit acceptance of bad behavior and letting powerful men do what they please is how monsters thrive. And why speak out, when it could put your livelihood and reputation on the line? It’s the ultimate negative feedback loop that makes sexual harassment and assault such a deeply entrenched issue.
Munn however, doesn’t care if the fallout negatively affects her career. “I think that people expected me to be quiet because it’s my movie, but the truth is I don’t care. I don’t care if this movie gave me all the money in the world and all the power. If it cost one person’s life, they can take it. I don’t want this career.”
(via The Hollywood Reporter, image: screengrab)
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