Shane Black Takes ‘Full Responsibility’ For Casting A Sex Offender In ‘The Predator’

One week ago, the TIFF premiere of The Predator was eclipsed by news that 20th Century Fox cut a scene featuring a registered sex offender, Steven Wilder Striegel, a friend of director Shane Black. The studio’s move arrived after Olivia Munn, the only other actor who appeared in the scene with Striegel, brought the matter to light, for which Fox says they were unaware. The LA Times suggested that Black may have known (he previously cast the actor in small roles in two other films) about Striegel’s charges and guilty plea, for which he served six months in jail. Yet Black issued an apology that stressed his claim of being “misled by a friend.” This hasn’t quelled the eyebrow raising in Black’s direction, and with The Predator hitting theaters this week, he delivered a more carefully worded apology in the above Associated Press video:

“I made an error in judgment that’s irresponsible — I’m not just a kid … I didn’t vet somebody. And it doesn’t matter that I was shocked at these emails, or that he misrepresented … it doesn’t matter. 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.”

Black added that he was bothered that the movie has been “overshadowed” as a result of “a stupid decision that I made.” Much of the resulting backlash that Black alludes to has to do with Olivia Munn’s claims that she was “shunned” by Black and her co-stars and that Fox had allegedly “chastised” for telling her fellow actors about the cut scene. Since Munn further spoke out, Sterling K. Brown has expressed support to Munn for doing “the right thing,” and Boyd Holbrook has apologized to her for staying silent on the matter.

(Via Associated Press)