Olivia Wilde Comes in Defense of Kathy Scruggs Amid 'Richard Jewell' Controversy
Warner Bros. Pictures

Stressing that she didn't have any say in 'how the film was ultimately crafted,' the Paul Walter Hauser co-star expresses her belief that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter did not 'trade sex for tips.'

AceShowbiz - "Richard Jewell" star Olivia Wilde has clarified her position amid controversy surrounding Clint Eastwood's latest film, insisting she doesn't believe the late journalist "traded sex for tips".

Olivia portrays Scruggs in the Warner Bros. film, which focuses on the events surrounding the discovery of a bomb at the 1996 Olympics, and the security guard who found it, Jewell.

He was initially hailed a hero until a media report suggested he may have planted the bomb. As a result, the security guard became one of the most persecuted people in America overnight. Scruggs, played by Olivia Wilde, broke the story that suggested Jewell may have planted the explosive. In the film, its alleged she traded sexual favours with an FBI agent, played by Jon Hamm, in order to get her story.

Publishers of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where Scruggs worked, have threatened Warner Bros. with a lawsuit unless they add a disclaimer to the film and, amid the drama, Olivia took to Twitter to clarify her own opinion about Scruggs.

"I was asked to play the supporting role of Kathy Scruggs, who was, by all accounts, bold, smart, and fearlessly undeterred by the challenge of being a female reporter in the south in the 1990s," she began. "I cannot even contemplate the amount of sexism she may have faced in the way of duty.

"Contrary to a swath of recent headlines, I do not believe that Kathy 'traded sex for tips'. Nothing in my research suggested she did so, and it was never my intention to suggest she had. That would be an appalling and misogynistic dismissal of the difficult work she did. The perspective of the fictional dramatisation of the story, as I understood it, was that Kathy, and the FBI agent who leaked false information to her, were in a pre-existing romantic relationship, not a transactional exchange of sex for information."

Olivia continued to stress that she didn't have any say in "how the film was ultimately crafted".

She added: "My previous comments about female sexuality were lost in translation, so let me be clear: I do not believe sex-positivity and professionalism are mutually exclusive. Kathy Scruggs was a modern, independent woman whose personal life should not detract from her accomplishments...

"I realize my opinions about Kathy, based on my own independent research, may differ from others involved with the film, but it was important to me to my my own position clear (sic)."

"Richard Jewell", released on 13 December, will feature a disclaimer at the end, which reads: "The film is based on actual historical events. Dialogue and certain events and characters contained in the film were created for the purposes of dramatisation."

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