The post Shia LaBeouf Says Olivia Wilde Didn’t Fire Him: “I Quit Your Film” appeared first on Consequence.
Shia LaBeouf is waging a leak war against Olivia Wilde over his 2020 departure from her upcoming film Don’t Worry Darling. After Variety published an interview with Wilde suggesting that LaBeouf was fired from the role that eventually went to Harry Styles, LaBeouf has shared private messages, letters, and video correspondence between himself and the director in an attempt to prove that actually, “I quit your film.”
To be fair to Wilde, she didn’t actually say the word “fired.” Variety used that phrase, while Wilde said something much vaguer and kind-sounding, though the result is probably the same.
“I say this as someone who is such an admirer of his work,” Wilde explained. “His process was not conducive to the ethos that I demand in my productions. He has a process that, in some ways, seems to require a combative energy, and I don’t personally believe that is conducive to the best performances. I believe that creating a safe, trusting environment is the best way to get people to do their best work. Ultimately, my responsibility is to the production and to the cast to protect them. That was my job.”
This is probably one of the nicer things said about LaBeouf since his ex partner FKA twigs accused him of repeated assaults. But LaBeouf didn’t take it that way, and in an email to Variety, he said that he “quit the film due to lack of rehearsal time,” on August 17th, 2020.
He also shared a letter he claims to have sent Wilde following the publication of her new interview, which begins, “I hope this finds you inspired, purposeful, fulfilled & well. I pray every night that you & your family have health, happiness, & everything God would give me. No joke, every night before I sleep.” This religiosity is somewhat new; the child of a Jewish mother and Christian father, he converted to Catholicism while shooting his upcoming film Padre Pio.
LaBeouf added, “I am a little confused about the narrative that I was fired, however. You and I both know the reasons for my exit. I quit your film because your actors & I couldn’t find time to rehearse.”
To back of this claim, LaBeouf revealed a text he purportedly received from Wilde on August 16th, 2020 — the night before he quit. “Thanks for letting me in on your thought process,” Wilde reportedly wrote. “I know that isn’t fun. Doesn’t feel good to say no to someone, and I respect your honesty. I’m honored you were willing to go there with me, for me to tell a story with you. I’m gutted because it could have been something special. I want to make clear how much it means to me that you trust me. That’s a gift I’ll take with me.”
He also released a video he said Wilde sent him on August 19th, 2020, two days after the resignation. “I feel like I’m not ready to give up on this yet, and I too am heartbroken and I want to figure this out,” she said in the video. “You know, I think this might be a bit of a wake-up call for Miss Flo, and I want to know if you’re open to giving this a shot with me, with us. If she really commits, if she really puts her mind and heart into it at this point and if you guys can make peace — and I respect your point of view, I respect hers — but if you guys can do it, what do you think? Is there hope? Will you let me know?”
Add it all up, and it does sound like Wilde tried to keep LaBeouf, and this suggestion that star Florence Pugh needed a “wake-up call” is certainly grist for the gossip mills. But again, Wilde didn’t use the word “fired” and wasn’t even especially harsh. Certainly she didn’t do further damage to LaBeouf’s reputation beyond what he did himself.
In the letter to Wilde, LaBeouf addressed the many reports about his abusive behavior, as well as his decision to enter rehab. “I have embarked on a journey that feels redemptive & righteous (dirty word but fitting). I write to you now with 627 days of sobriety and a moral compass that never existed before my great humbling that was the last year and a quarter of my life. I reached out to you a few months ago to make amends; & I still pray one day, you can find space in your heart to forgive me for the failed collaboration we shared.”
As for FKA twigs, he added, “My failings with Twigs are fundamental and real, but they are not the narrative that has been presented. There is a time and a place to deal with such things, and I am trying to navigate a nuanced situation with respect for her and the truth, hence my silence.”
Don’t Worry Darling will debut at the Venice Film Festival on September 5th before receiving a wider release on September 23rd. The promotional circuit has been at times overshadowed by Wilde’s contentious custody battle with ex Jason Sudeikis. She was served custody papers while on stage at CinemaCon, and while Sudeikis said he “had no prior knowledge of the time or place the envelope would have been delivered,” Wilde has referred to the event as “deeply painful.”