Petitions against Matt Damon appearing in “Oceans 8” have arisen after Damon stated some controversial comments around Hollywood’s sexual harassment scandals.
Currently, the online petition has 23,500 signatures to the goal of 25,000.
The Damon comments are around his potential involvement in squashing a story from 2004 about Harvey Weinstein and his history of sexual misconduct. The petition claims that Damon’s involvement in “Oceans 8” will “trivialize the serious nature” of the allegations.
“Damon’s inclusion would trivialize the serious nature of the charges against sexual abusers like Weinstein show massive disrespect for the brave women speaking out,” read the petition.
The New York Times wrote a story back in October about Weinstein and his overflow of allegations against him for sexual harassment against multiple women in Hollywood.
The Wrap’s founder, Sharon Waxman, previously claimed that Damon and Russell Crowe meddled in a 2004 story she was writing for The New York Times about Weinstein and Miramax’s head, Fabrizio Lombardo behavior. Waxman claimed that Damon and Crowe called her directly to vouch for the story. Instead, the New York Times killed the story altogether.
Damon confirmed the call to Deadline but said that Weinstein only told him that Waxman was writing a negative story about Lombardo and Damon was calling to vouch for Lombardo.
“Ocean’s 8” is an all-female reboot of “Ocean’s 11” and has an all-star-studded cast. The cast includes names like Rihanna, Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, and more. The petition states that the film is supposed to be all female-empowering and Damon’s involvement misses the point.
The petition continues to say that “Damon not only ignored but enabled his friend Harvey Weinstein’s inappropriate behavior.”
Damon has also received criticism for his recent comments on #MeToo. Last week, Damon suggested in an interview with ABC News that the claims of sexual harassment should be viewed differently than sexual assault.
“There’s a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right?” Damon said in the interview. “Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated, without question, but they shouldn’t be conflated, right?”
The petition suggests that “Ocean’s 8” producers, George Clooney and Steven Soderbergh, should leave Damon’s cameo where it belongs, “on the cutting room floor.”