Director Shane Black has apologized for casting a sex offender in his movie 'The Predator'. The director mentioned that he was "deeply sorry" for unknowingly casting Steven Wilder Striegel, whose secret was spilled by actress Olivia Munn when she reported the fact to 20th Century Fox following which Steven's scene was removed from the movie.
His case was verified almost a week after the Los Angeles Times reported the removal of the scene from 'The Predator' when 24-year-old Paige Carnes informed the Times that she was allegedly abused by Striegel when she was just 14. In 2010, Striegel was charged with two cases of felonies which included the risk of injury to a child and enticing a minor by a computer for which he was imprisoned for six months. Due to her young age at the time of the incident, Paige was referred to as a young Jane Doe, and she stated that at the time, she was way too young to speak for herself.
Just underscoring this:— Nina Metz (@Nina_Metz) September 6, 2018
Big deal Hollywood writer-director Shane Black said he has long believed his friend was "caught up in a bad situation versus something lecherous."
This is what Shane Black thinks is getting caught up in a bad situation versus something lecherous 👇 pic.twitter.com/oSPTGOmFLE
In her statement, she also expressed gratitude to Munn who revealed Striegel's case to the company. Although Munn was the first one to take note of the incident, she initially had to face several obstacles from her co-stars. During her appearance on the September 11 episode of Ellen's show, Munn told Ellen, "It was going to be something that got out there, so I wanted to give my costars a heads up so that they wouldn’t be blindsided like I was. When I did call my costars, I got chastised the next day by the studio for telling them and ‘Why am I just not keeping it quiet? It’s all going to be okay. It got deleted. What’s the big deal?’ And I said, ‘Well, it happened.'”
Watch the interview below:
Speaking of Paige's decision to come forward, Munn said: “I'm blown away, honestly, so eloquent, so brave. The title ‘Jane Doe’ is there to protect victims, especially minors...when she said my name is Paige Carnes, former Jane Doe, that just, I mean, that just broke me because I just thought what she has been through to get to this place, and I’m so proud of her, and she should be so proud of herself.” Munn adds, “That won't just cause ripples it will be waves that will last for so long with other victims and survivors who want to speak out."
Munn further stated that in spite of the complain, Fox had remained silent about the matter for two days. However, in their statement, Fox had said, "Our studio was not aware of Mr. Striegel’s background when he was hired. We were not aware of his background during the casting process due to legal limitations that impede studios from running background checks on actors.” Black, who was well aware of his friend's past had stated that he was only trying to help a friend. "I personally chose to help a friend, I can understand others might disapprove, as his conviction was on a sensitive charge and not to be taken lightly.”
However, during an interview with Associated Press, the director seemed to almost have a meltdown as he apologized for single-handedly ruining a film which could have been a massive success. Black, who had cast Striegel in 'Iron Man 3' and 'The Nice Guys' after he served time in jail confessed, "I made an error in judgment that’s irresponsible — I’m not just a kid. I was the captain of that ship — it’s my job to make sure that those things don’t happen. And I failed. And I may have, I did cause pain to people in the cast. That’s unacceptable. I take full responsibility. I am very deeply sorry.”
20th Century Fox releases 'The Predator' nationwide on September 14.
Watch his interview here: