Variety clarified its story shortly after posting it. Stewart, it noted, was talking about gender equality, not diversity.
But the damage was already done.
HitFix a shoot-from-the-hip celebrity site, added Stewart to its “semi-regular rundown of entertainment-related kerfuffles.”
It called the “Twilight” actress the “latest white celebrity to get in hot water for her tone-deaf comments on the #OscarssoWhite controversy.”
Social media was also snapping with snark.
Stewart has had a legion of resident haters ever since her cheating scandal with “Snow White and the Huntsman” director Rupert Sanders.
The scandal effectively ended her four-year relationship with “Twilight” co-star Robert Pattinson and split their once united fan base.
She hasn’t helped her case much with her surly attitude, her aloofness (also misunderstood) and her rough treatment of the paparazzi and sometimes fans in public.
In any event, Stewart set the stage for the uproar during an interview at the Sundance Film Festival. She’s there to promote her movie “Certain Women.”
She scolded those who have been making noise in Hollywood. “Instead of sitting around and complaining,” she said, they should “do something” about the problem. “Go write something. Go do something.”
What really irked critics was her admonishment that the “subject is just like so prevalently (sic) everywhere right now, and it’s boring.”
Say what you will about her utterances, the fires were stoked when the article accompanying the video vaguely suggested she was talking about the diversity issue roiling the Oscars right now.
Actually, she was talking about gender equality, a controversy most recently kindled by Jennifer Lawrence. Some low flying tabloids even suggested Stewart was indirectly taking a shot at Lawrence, her supposed rival.
For the record here’s what she actually said:
It’s hard for me to speak to that, because — it’s awkward. I’m so fucking lucky and so stimulated and driven and not bored. And I have something in front of me all the time. So it sounds weird for me to sit around and be like ‘It’s not fair!’ Guys make more money because their movies make more money. Let’s start making more movies…If you’re bored or if you feel like there’s a lack of something in front of you, it’s silly for me to say ‘Go do something’…instead of sitting around and complaining about that, ‘Do something.’ Go write something, go do something for yourself. And then that’s easy to say, like fuck, it’s hard to get movies made. It’s a huge luxury. Who gets to just make movies? But that subject is just so prevalently everywhere right now, and it’s boring.”
Stewart has never been the most coherent speaker, but all the buzz words were there to incite a social media riot.
“Kristen Stewart has got nerve talking about the topic of diversity being boring. She shouldn’t be calling anything boring w/ her blank face,” wrote one critic.
Said another: “Kristen stewart thinks the struggles of people of color in the industry are non-existent and she gets a variety of roles so ofc shes happy.”
Stewart’s not insubstantial army of sycophants was quick to counter-attack, especially after Variety issued its correction. Still, not everyone was ready to let her off the hook.
Some critics still found her comments offensive even if she was talking about gender equality, and not diversity.
For her part, Stewart was philosophical. “The public kind of burned me at the stake, but that’s okay. I can take it. I’m not dead,” she reportedly said in response.
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