Ben Affleck Apologizes After Groping Accusation

Allegation came out after Affleck slammed Harvey Weinstein
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 11, 2017 10:20 AM CDT
Updated Oct 11, 2017 1:28 PM CDT

Ben Affleck spoke out against Harvey Weinstein Tuesday, stating on Facebook that he is "saddened and angry" at the "completely unacceptable" allegations of assault and harassment against the producer. Backlash soon followed, and within hours, Affleck himself was accused of inappropriate behavior. He quickly apologized. Details on that and more:

  • 'I didn't forget': The Affleck backlash started when a Twitter user posted, "Ben Affleck should’ve just kept quiet. Clearly he wasn’t thinking about his daughters when he left them to gallivant with their nanny." (Affleck had said in his post, "We need to do better at protecting our sisters, friends, co-workers and daughters.") In response to that tweet, another user added, "He also grabbed Hilarie Burton's breasts on TRL once. Everyone forgot though." The 35-year-old actress herself then weighed in: "I didn't forget," she wrote, adding that she was just "a kid" when it happened.

  • TRL: Burton, who hosted Total Request Live before going on to acting roles, went on to tweet an old clip in which she says, "He comes over and tweaks my left boob," People reports. Later in the clip, Affleck says to her, "How old are you—19?" On Twitter, she explains that "I had to laugh back then so I wouldn't cry."
  • Apology: Affleck soon tweeted, "I acted inappropriately toward Ms. Burton and I sincerely apologize."
  • McGowan joins: Rose McGowan, one of the actresses accusing Weinstein, also reacted to Affleck's statement, first by simply telling him to "f--- off." She later elaborated, accusing Affleck of knowing all about Weinstein's problems: "'GODDAMNIT! I TOLD HIM TO STOP DOING THAT' you said that to my face. The press conf I was made to go to after assault. You lie." She confirmed to the New York Times that she was accusing Affleck of being aware of Weinstein's treatment of her, and of lying on Tuesday when he claimed he had no idea what Weinstein had been accused of.
  • Story killed? Affleck pal Matt Damon has been accused of helping to get a story about Weinstein killed years ago, though Damon has denied that. At the Wrap, Sharon Waxman wrote that in 2004 she, then a New York Times reporter, worked on a story about Weinstein that never ran. She says Weinstein had Damon call her to vouch for a friend of Weinstein's who was accused of procuring women for him. Damon gave his side of the story to Deadline, insisting that at the time that he thought he was simply vouching for a Miramax exec with whom he'd had a good professional experience, and that he had no idea sexual allegations against Weinstein were involved.
  • The other Affleck: Damon has also given his own statement decrying Weinstein's alleged actions, and at the Daily Beast, Amy Zimmerman calls out the "glaring hypocrisy" in both his and Affleck's statements, considering that both actors played a huge role in Casey Affleck's Oscar campaign last year despite allegations of sexual misconduct against the younger Affleck.
  • The list: As for the accusations against Weinstein himself, Jezebel is keeping a running list of women who have come forward.
  • Brotherly betrayal? Sources tell TMZ Weinstein has a receipt that he believes proves it was his brother, Bob, who masterminded the original New York Times exposé that opened the floodgates, and that he thinks it was all an attempt by Bob to take over the Weinstein Company. Meanwhile, the Hollywood Reporter looks at whether the company can survive without Harvey.
  • Unlikely denials: At the Boston Globe, Renée Graham argues that Weinstein is far from "an aberration" and casts doubt on all the Hollywood bigwigs claiming they had no idea this was going on.
Click for more of the latest, including the dissolution of Weinstein's marriage. (More Ben Affleck stories.)

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