Wow. Just… wow.
By calling them “lying cocksuckers” and “cunts.”
In a shockingly combative interview with Rolling Stone, Toback comes right out and denies any claims in the most vulgar terms possible:
“Lemme be really clear about this. I don’t want to get a pat on the back, but I’ve struggled seriously to make movies with very little money, that I write, that I direct, that mean my life to me. The idea that I would offer a part to anyone for any other reason than that he or she was gonna be the best of anyone I could find is so disgusting to me. And anyone who says it is a lying cocksucker or cunt or both. Can I be any clearer than that?”
Yeah. He seems like a real gentleman. We clearly had him all wrong…
The indie filmmaker’s next tactic seems to be to prove how safe he is by pointing out that he’s not actively assaulting an actress right this minute:
“Anyone who says that, I just want to spit in his or her fucking face. I’m sitting here with Sienna Miller. By the way, no one who’s ever worked with me would ever say anything like that. No one. But I’ve just finished a movie with Sienna, which you should see, and help to get out there, called The Private Life of a Modern Woman.”
Did he seriously just plug his new movie? What the fuck?? Ew.
“No, seriously, I find it offensive and insulting and disgusting, that people├óΓé¼┬ª Because it’s the opposite of the way I work. I don’t give my best friends parts unless they deserve them. Ever.”
He does realize the issue is less about the giving people undeserved roles and more the sexual harassment, right?
Next, Toback actually demands the names of these women from interviewer Hillel Aron. The interview was recorded just before the initial story broke, so clearly James had no idea the number of women coming forward would be in the triple digits and include Hollywood A-listers.
We shudder to think what he might have done with those names, especially considering Aron says the director called him up hours after the interview to try to convince him he should kill the story because it was “beneath good journalistic standards.” Man, he really didn’t know what was coming.
At one point during the interview he even asks:
“My question to you is, do you want to be a writer? Do you have any sense of yourself as a serious person? Because this stuff should be beneath anybody.”
When Aron tells him it isn’t just one or two women but several, something that can’t be dismissed in that way, Toback responds:
“No, they hear each other. And they gang up. There was an article years and years ago with a bunch of anonymous people. People read things├óΓé¼┬ª it’s all, you know, me too, me too, me too, me too, me too. Anyway, it’s too stupid to waste time on. It really is. It doesn’t have anything to do with my life in any way. It never has. I work seriously with complete integrity. I never, never, never have offered a part to anyone who didn’t deserve it, and I’ve never not delivered when I do offer a part. My word is better than a contract.”
With that attitude, it sounds to us like he probably thinks the women coming forward with claims about Harvey Weinstein and others are lying as well, just to say “me too.”
Or at least, that’s what he wants other people to think.
Toback’s final word on the subject? Mostly more of trying to convince the interviewer not to publish any of it:
“No, I’ve never said ‘I’ll get you a film role’ to anybody ever… Anything like that is nauseating and disgusting. And I would never say anything like ‘I’ll get you a film role.’ It’s too stupid to dignify. It’s pathetic lies. It’s just too fucking embarrassing and idiotic. And if I were you, I wouldn’t go repeating it, unless you really knew it were true, because it isn’t. So that’s all I have to say. This is not worth wasting another second on.”
BTW, since all the accounts have come out, he’s chosen not to give out any more comments, saying simply to the L.A. Times:
“I have nothing to say about anything.”
[Image via Cinzia Camela/Apega/Lexi Jones/WENN.]