Kathy Bates is worried that the controversy over Richard Jewell has “clouded” the movie.
The film, directed by Clint Eastwood, documents the real-life story of security guard Jewell, who was wrongly accused of planting a bomb at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.
Shortly after it was released in the U.S. in December, controversy erupted over the depiction of journalist Kathy Scruggs, played by Olivia Wilde, and her colleagues at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution newspaper.
Lawyers for the publication even threatened legal action over the suggestion that Scruggs slept with an FBI agent to get information on the case, and Wilde stated on Twitter that she didn’t believe the journalist traded sex for tip-offs.
Bates, who has landed a Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for her portrayal of Jewell’s mother Bobi in the movie, discussed the furore in a new interview with Deadline and shared her sadness that the controversy has marred the release of a film trying to clear the security guard’s name.
“(It) really clouded, I felt, the film. I worried that it would affect how people would feel toward the film,” she explained. “As an actor, all I can say is I just really hope that it doesn’t turn people off from going to see it.”
Jewell died in 2007 at the age of 44, and Bates revealed his mother Bobi is sad that her son didn’t get to see the movie.
“She loves the film,” the 71-year-old shared. “And I have this feeling that she has been brought some relief. She just wishes that it could have happened when Richard was alive.”
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