It was hard to ignore Brie Larson’s reaction — or lack thereof — after she presented Casey Affleck with his Oscar for Best Actor last month.
Even as the “Manchester By The Sea” star took home the Academy Award for Best Actor, conversation quickly returned to sexual harassment allegations previously made against him, with his critics honing in on presenter Brie Larson’s noticeable reaction to his win.
Now, the actress is finally addressing the moment, hinting at why she chose to hold her applause for the winner as she stood behind him onstage.
“I think that whatever it was that I did onstage kind of spoke for itself,” she told Vanity Fair about the quiet protest. “I’ve said all that I need to say about that topic.”
While appearing on “Live with Kelly” on Thursday, the actress offered another vague answer when being questioned about her “out of body experience” by Kelly Ripa. “I am grateful it was televised because I have no memory of it” she explained, before flashing a large grin, suggesting that she no longer was willing to discuss the sensitive topic.
Larson had previously avoided talking about her headline-making Oscar moment, choosing instead to let her actions speak for themselves.
Academy Awards viewers seemed to feel that Larson, last year’s winner for Best Actress, came across as apathetic as she presented the award to Affleck and quickly voiced their opinions on Twitter.
During the telecast, many noted that Larson is an outspoken advocate for sexual assault victims, who won her Oscar for her role as a sexual assault survivor in “Room”.
Another Twitter user pointed out that Larson did not clap after presenting Affleck with the Oscar.
Larson wasn’t the only star feeling salty about the result. After the award for Best Picture was mistakenly given to “La La Land”, “The Office” star B.J. Novak seized the opportunity to throw some shade Affleck’s way.
Despite high praise for his performance in “Manchester”, Affleck hasn’t been able to fully overcome the scandal. In 2010, two women who worked on his film “I’m Still Here” filed separate lawsuits suing Affleck for approximately $2 million each according to The Hollywood Reporter, alleging that he made unwelcome sexual advances towards them. Affleck fervently denied the claims and both cases were eventually settled out of court.
Affleck’s PR team released the following statement in Sept. 2010: “The disputes between Flemmy Productions, LLC and Casey Affleck with Amanda White and Magdalena Gorka in connection with the film ‘I’m Still Here’ have been resolved to the mutual satisfaction of the parties and the lawsuits are being dismissed.”
Affleck’s not the only Oscar winner who’s been accused of sexual abuse and won an Academy Award. Roman Polanski, who fled the United States after he was arrested for the rape of a 13-year-old girl, won Best Director and Best Picture for “The Pianist” in 2002 while he was a fugitive. As well, Woody Allen, who got romantically involved with former girlfriend Mia Farrow’s adopted daughter, Soon-Yi, in 1992 and allegedly sexually abused his adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, won an Oscar for “Midnight In Paris” in 2012 and was most recently nominated for “Blue Jasmine” in 2013.
While controversy continues to surround Affleck’s win, the night’s most shocking moment – “La La Land” being mistakenly awarded Best Picture over “Moonlight” – appears to be water under the bridge for the makers of the acclaimed films. Watch the video below for more.