Over 13,000 people have signed a petition calling for Matt Damon‘s cameo to be cut from the upcoming Ocean’s 8, in the wake of his repeatedly bad comments about the ongoing conversations of sexual assault and harassment within Hollywood.
The petition was originally started in October, after reports claimed the actor helped kill a 2004 New York Times story that would have exposed his frequent collaborator Harvey Weinstein (he has denied this), but has gained new traction now that Damon’s foot has found a new home in his mouth on the Downsizing press tour.
Reporters have frequently asked him to comment on the ongoing sexual harassment and assault scandals, and for some reason, Damon is all too keen to share his (bad) opinions.
First, he unhelpfully clarified that there’s a difference between “patting someone on the butt and rape”, then said he’d continue to work with sex pests on a “case-by-case basis”, and then finally asked why, oh why, aren’t we praising men more not sexually harassing or assaulting people?
Gosh it’s so *interesting how men with all these opinions about women’s differentiation between sexual misconduct, assault and rape reveal themselves to be utterly tone deaf and as a result, systemically part of the problem( *profoundly unsurprising)
— Minnie Driver TICKLESS WONDER (@driverminnie) December 15, 2017
The Care2 petition is basically saying: enough is enough. Get this man who doesn’t understand the complexities of sexual harassment out of a film that celebrates women.
“The all-female reboot of Ocean’s 8 was supposed to be an empowering film for women. The movie spotlights the talents of its tremendous female cast and showcases the savvy and prowess of its characters,” it reads.
“But that was before allegations that Matt Damon — who has a well-publicised cameo in Oceans 8 — not only ignored but enabled his friend Harvey Weinstein’s inappropriate behaviour by trying to squash a New York Times report in 2004 that detailed instances where Weinstein had used his position as a high-powered studio executive to harass and even assault women.”
Damon, who played Linus Caldwell in the George Clooney-led Ocean’s films, is one of several celebs reported to make a cameo in the all-female reboot, which stars Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Sarah Paulson, Rihanna, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Mindy Kaling and Awkwafina.
“Damon also recently gave an interview where said he’d still work people who had been accused of sexual misconduct, on a ‘case-by-case’ basis. This behaviour is beyond enabling — it’s just gross. Matt Damon should not be in this movie,” the petition continued.
“Damon’s inclusion would trivialise 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.”
It’s calling on Ocean’s 8 producers Clooney and Steven Soderbergh to “toss Damon’s Oceans 8 cameo where it belongs: on the cutting room floor.”