Sam Elliott Apologizes For His Harsh Critique Of ‘The Power Of The Dog’

Sam Elliott and Benedict Cumberbatch
Sam Elliott and Benedict Cumberbatch
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Last month, on Marc Macron’s podcast WTF, Sam Elliott went all guns blazing about Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog. While appearing on the podcast, Marc asked Elliott about his opinion on the film. He was vehement in his answer and did not like the portrayal of the Westerners in the film. He thought the portrayal of the Cowboys was equivalent to the Chippendales Dancers. Elliott scathingly attacked the director by claiming that she doesn’t know anything about the West. However, his tone while talking about the film has changed. Recently, He also apologized for his earlier comments.

Sam Elliot Apologized For His Words At The Promotion Of 1883

Sam Elliott
Sam Elliott

While being on the panel at the promotional event for his upcoming series 1883, Sam couldn’t escape from the question about his comments about The Power Of Dog. This time, he was all in defense of the Oscar-nominated film and all praise for the Oscar-winning director of the film, Jane Campion.

While speaking, he said, “I told the 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. I am.”

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When he was asked the question, he wittily said, “First, don’t go do a podcast with the call letters WTF. He admitted that the film struck a chord with him and he wanted to convey that through the podcast. The list of apologies not only included the cast of the film, but also the gay community.

The actor said, “I wasn’t very articulate about it. I didn’t articulate it very well. I said some things that hurt people and I feel terrible about that. The gay community has been incredible to me my whole career.” He extended gratitude to the gay community for supporting him before he was in the town.

He added, “Friends on every level and every job description up until today. I’m sorry I hurt any of those friends and someone that I loved. And anyone else by the words that I used.”

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The Cast And The Director Also Responded To The Comments Made By Elliot

Jane Campion
Jane Campion

The Oscar-winning director Jane Campion defended her stance in a podcast. She responded, “It has to be said. I think he was being a bit of a b-i-t-c-h, because, you know, he’s not a cowboy either, he’s an actor — he grew up in Sacramento and was educated in Oregon, you know?

Campion added, We’re dealing in a fictional world, we’re dealing in a mythic universe. The West is a myth, it doesn’t exist — Annie Proulx said that — and there’s a lot of room on the range to explore that myth.

She continued, “And this is just another version of it. You know, like, if you think about Sergio Leone movies, where were they shot? They were shot in Spain, and they are some of the greatest explorations of the Western myth ever made. So, you know, I think it’s just a little bit of a crusty cowboy problem.”

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Benedict Cumberbatch, who played the protagonist in the film, was not aware of Elliot’s comments. Nevertheless, he answered the question. He said, “Somebody really took offense to — I haven’t heard it, so it’s unfair for me to comment in detail on it — to the West being portrayed in this way.” 

A still from The Power Of Dog
A still from The Power Of Dog

Cumberbatch continued further that the world is still intolerant of homosexuality and there is conformity towards the sexuality of a person involved in a certain occupation.

He was fortunate to portray the character. While speaking, he said,  “So I think to deconstruct that through Phil, to look at that, it’s not a history lesson.”

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His co-star Jesse Plemons told THR in March that Elliott’s criticism “made him laugh,” noting that people can have their own opinions. “I know there are different layers to that. Not everyone has to like it, I’ll say that. That’s fine.”

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