'Oh Dustin' ... Hoffman publicly questioned on harassment claim

Oliver Hoffman’s war of words over sexual harassment claims

While marking the 20 anniversary of Hoffman's Wag the Dog, Oliver, host of an HBO talk show, brought the sexual allegations into the limelight.

Hoffman responded with a public apology saying: "I have the utmost respect for women and feel awful that anything I might have done could have put her in an uncomfortable situation".

Writer Anna Graham Hunter claimed in November that she was harassed by The Graduate actor while working on TV movie Death of a Salesman in 1985 at the age of 17, and he quickly issued an apology, insisting he has the "utmost respect" for women and adding the alleged behaviour "is not reflective of who I am".

To which Oliver responded by saying that there needs to be a "cultural shift" in what was viewed as appropriate behaviour because what might seem amusing to one person might have damning effects on the other. In a six-minute (edited) video taken by a journalist who was attending the panel discussion, Hoffman is seen asking Oliver if he actually believed "the stuff you're reading" and questioning why Graham Hunter hadn't come forward with her story in over three decades - something that earned him an "Oh, Dustin" and an exasperated sigh from Oliver.

"I gotta say, I don't love that response either", Oliver replied. "What response do you want?' - Hoffman 'It doesn't seem self-reflective in the way the situation demands" - Oliver".

Hoffman hit back with, "You weren't there" and Oliver responded, "I'm glad", which reportedly drew gasps from the audience. "John Oliver, you selfish f-ck, you ruined paying customers evening out in Manhattan", Rapaport tweeted Tuesday. From a few things you've read you've made an incredible assumption about me.

Homing in on the language of the statement, Oliver said to Hoffman: "I'm not the moral arbiter of anything".

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"It's not for me to say", says Oliver. But they were sexual in terms of the humor in it.

"Well, there is a point in her not bringing this up for 40 years", Hoffman said of the 32-year-old incident. Though Tootsie went on to fuel the conversation around women's rights and sexual autonomy in the early '80s, it seems that Hoffman was left untouched by what could possibly be one of his most culturally significant films. "The theme of the movie is he became a better man by having been a woman".

Oliver said that he considered not addressing the subject at what was intended as a genial chat but then decided he bore an obligation.

It's this point that Oliver ends with: "I guess the thing that you said that was interesting to me was "the things that we do between takes.' I think it's probably 'the things that we do between takes" that's probably a cultural shift that needs to happen".

"Am I the powerful man?" 'Why the ... didn't I say something? "Keep a kind of open mind if you can, John". "I wish 80-year-old Dustin Hoffman would have told you to suck his 80-year-old dick live on stage".

Tensions did not cool throughout the session.

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