Jason Bateman Expands On His Apology Following The ‘Arrested Development’ Cast Controversy


Back in May while promoting the fifth season of Arrested Development, Jessica Walter (who plays Lucille) tearfully forgave Jeffrey Tambor for a temperamental outburst on the set of the series during a press conference with The New York Times. It was an uncomfortable moment, doubly charged by sexual misconduct allegations leveled at Tambor based on behavior on the set of Transparent, which got him fired from that show. Bateman’s response in that moment was not taken well on social media, and many accused Bateman of attempting to “mansplain” Tambor’s on-set behavior.

The attempt fell flat, and Bateman ultimately issued an apology, acknowledging it was a learning moment for him and that he should have listened instead of trying to fix a fight.

On this week’s WTF with Marc Maron, Bateman — who is currently promoting the second season of Netflix’s Ozark — had an opportunity to expand on that apology outside of the confines of social media.

On the episode, Maron suggested that it sounded like Bateman was just trying to “make everything OK” in that moment, and Bateman agreed. “Yeah, that’s exactly what it was,” Bateman said. “Unfortunately, I overshot the mark.”

“One of the things that was the fallout from that is that it sounded like I was OK with and excusing people being disruptive on set or affecting other people’s work processes, and that could not be further from the truth. That’s part of me sort of thinking that if I just keep talking people are going to understand what I’m saying and everything is going to be alright. I just need to shut up and listen a lot more and stop trying to make everything OK … It just wasn’t my conversation to get into.”

Bateman did say that, while the reaction from social media was not positive, in the room there were “hugs and kisses and we all left that meeting thinking that was a really beautiful thing, because Jessica said” that she was going to take the moment to forgive Tambor. “We all thought that was an incredibly positive thing because we hadn’t sat with Jeffrey in that setting to hear about everything [that happened on Transparent] so it was a really emotional vibe in there … [Jessica] was being very generous to put all that behind her and behind their relationship … it was a really kind and beautiful thing she did.”

He did acknowledge, however, that he completely understood the backlash. “I can see from rereading the transcript and hearing an excerpt from it how the position I took could be misconstrued for excusing his behavior and giving him cover and being insensitive to Jessica, and I get that, and I so apologize for that … and I continue to listen and learn a lot because obviously there was a blind spot there for me that I got a lot to learn about.”

Ozark returns to Netflix on August 28th.

Source: WTF with Marc Maron