Following her TCA appearance today for Starz’s spy series The Rook, Olivia Munn addressed questions about the fallout from The Predator scandal last September which saw the actress shunned by her fellow cast after alerting Fox that she shared a scene with a registered sex offender and that the scene needed to be cut. The studio deleted the scene, and director Shane Black apologized via The Los Angeles Times and Associated Press.
Munn informed TCA reporters today that in the wake of the whole ordeal, she did hear back from Black who left a message with her publicist “that he wanted to talk. It’s something that now the ball is in my court, and I have to reach out but….there’s a lot that transpired that I needed to digest.”
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Munn expressed how last fall was a challenging time for her to take a stand; how she’s not one to respond on social media or issue public statements that are off-the-cuff. She thinks hard before she speaks. Munn was tipped by a journalist that Black routinely employed Steven Wilder Striegel, a registered sex offender who once tried to entice a 14-year-old girl into a sexual relationship on the internet. After hearing about this, Munn figured out that she had shared a scene with Striegel, and that’s when she reached out to Fox. At the Toronto International Film Festival premiere of The Predator, Munn did press on her own for the film, away from the cast.
In the wake of the entire scandal, the most redeeming part for Munn was that the Jane Doe, who was Striegel’s victim, now 24, came forward, reclaiming her identity as Paige Carnes and expressing gratitude to Munn (“To be acknowledged by a stranger, on a public platform about this issue is incredibly empowering,” Carnes expressed in a statement to the Los Angeles Times back in September).
“She was somewhere in the world seeing how all this went down, I didn’t know who she was,” said Munn today. “She put out a statement and that was so surprising and amazing for me to see. What she said in this very eloquent statement; she had been seeing all this support for me and that personally felt supportive for her too.”
“That gave her the courage to get in front of that Jane Doe title, to protect people in that position and gave her a lot of strength. The United Nations gave me an award for speaking out, most likely for all The Predator stuff that had gone down. I knew I couldn’t accept an award like that without having Paige there and I flew her and her father out there for that award,” said Munn.
Munn said that it was all the news, blogs and social media which lifted her up and “made me realize that even if Hollywood was going to kick me out, that people saw that I did the right thing.”
Said Munn, “Seeing how strong she (Paige) is and how much the world made her feel that she mattered; that’s what this is all about.”
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