Actor Sam Elliott walked back his viral comments regarding the Netflix film “The Power of the Dog” at a Deadline Hollywood panel Sunday.
Last month, Elliott said on comedian Marc Maron’s “WTF Podcast” that he did not enjoy “The Power of the Dog,” saying it was a “piece of sh*t.” Elliott questioned the authenticity of the film and director Jane Campion’s understanding of the American West among other strongly-worded feedback on the overall portrayal of cowboying. The comments went viral, leading to retorts from Campion and film leads Benedict Cumberbatch and Kodi Smit-McPhee.
This is the first time Elliott has responded publicly since his comments went viral, and was asked about them while discussing his hit TV series “1883” alongside a panel of his castmates hosted by Deadline Hollywood. “Sam, you know, you had some well publicized-comments in a podcast … they seemed far afield of the guy I met and spent a bit of time with down there on that Texas set,” the host asked, “you know, every now and then a cowboy falls off his horse, so I just wanted to put it out there, is there anything that maybe you want to say to sort of clarify that?”
— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) April 10, 2022
“That movie struck a chord with me, and then trying to tell the guy, the WTF guy, how I felt about the film, I wasn’t very articulate about it. I didn’t articulate it very well, and I said some things that hurt people, and I feel terrible about that,” Elliott responded. “The gay community has been incredible to me my entire career — and I mean my entire career — from before I got started and I was this town. Friends on every level, in every job description. Up until today, with my agent, my dear friend, my agent of a number of years. And I’m sorry that I hurt any of those friends, and someone that I loved, and anyone else, by the words that I used.”
“I also told this [WTF] podcaster that I thought Jane Campion was a brilliant director, and I want to apologize to the cast of ‘The Power of the Dog.’ Brilliant actors, all, and in particular, Benedict Cumberbatch. I can only say that I’m sorry, and I am.” (RELATED: Director Goes From Criticizing Sam Elliott Straight To Putting Foot In Her Own Mouth)
Elliott’s “1883” co-star, Faith Hill, followed up his comments by saying, Elliot is a man of “amazing character.” LaMonica Garrett, who starred alongside Hill and Elliott in the Western series, broke the tension on stage by cheering “we love you, Sam!”