Gwendolyn Purdom
December 22, 2017 11:39 am
Noam Galai/WireImage/Getty Images

As you know, Matt Damon’s been making some interesting (read: really boneheaded) comments related to Hollywood’s current reckoning with sexual predators.

First, the actor told ABC News that he knew Harvey Weinstein — someone he’s worked with regularly — had sexually harassed Gwyneth Paltrow years ago but he “knew that they had come to whatever agreement or understanding that they had come to” and that she “had handled it.” Then, he went on a completely unhelpful “not all men” kick, insisting we should be talking more about the good guys and the spectrum of bad behavior.

Now, Matt Damon may finally see it’s time for him to stop talking and start listening.

A petition to drop the actor’s cameo from the upcoming Ocean’s 8 just surpassed its original goal — and now has more than 20,000 signatures. With a dream-team cast of stellar women including Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, and Anne Hathaway, Ocean’s 8 looks like it could be the next fierce female sequel the world needs. So, the fact that Damon would reportedly make a cameo in the movie didn’t sit well with many, who say his record shows he’s hardly an advocate for female empowerment.

“The movie [spotlights] the talents of its tremendous female cast and showcase the savvy and prowess of its characters,” the creators of the “Remove Matt Damon” petition posted on their page. They added that Damon, in contrast, detracts from that. And not only did Damon ignore what he knew about Weinstein, the petition says, he enabled him:

As of now, the petition has garnered 20,342 signatures out of a reportedly requested 19,000. The petition’s goal is now listed as 25,000.

The participants aren’t the first to call out Damon for inserting himself and his misguided insights into the larger conversation about sexual misconduct.

Backlash has been swift on social media following each new comment, with powerful rebuttals from Alyssa Milano and Damon’s former Good Will Hunting co-star Minnie Driver making widespread headlines. And this all feels a little too familiar: Damon previously came under fire for not checking his privilege in comments he’s made about diversity in Hollywood.

So far, Ocean’s 8 producers George Clooney and Steven Soderbergh have yet to respond. But whether Damon shows up in the movie or not, those who created the petition and those who signed it, like so many others standing up in the face of injustice in the past few months, have made their voices heard.

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