John Oliver on Dustin Hoffman Confrontation: 'The Whole Thing Just Made Me Feel Sad'

Oliver confronted Hoffman over sexual harassment allegations at a 'Wag the Dog' screening earlier this month.

John Oliver

Image via Jim Spellman/WireImage

John Oliver

During a 20th anniversary screening of Barry Levinson's political comedy Wag the Dog earlier this month, Last Week Tonight truth-teller John Oliver confronted Dustin Hoffman over sexual harassment allegations. The confrontation resulted in a tense exchange between the two, with Hoffman accusing Oliver of making "an incredible assumption" about him. "I'm guilty," he said sarcastically at one point during the panel. In a new interview, Oliver opened up about the confrontation for the first time.

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Discussing the incident on Sky One's Russell Howard Hour, Oliver revealed that he had planned the confrontation with prior approval from the organizers of the Wag the Dog anniversary screening. "I said, 'If he is going to be there, I have to ask him about this. I understand you might not want your event to be about this, so you might want to get someone else,' and they said, 'No, no, we want you to do it,'" Oliver said, according to Entertainment Weekly.

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As for the resulting exchange, Oliver told Howard he felt he had "tried and failed" to get good answers from Hoffman. "It felt unavoidable and that we had to have a discussion about it," Oliver said. "It wasn't ideal but it became such a big story—but it became about my questions rather than his answers. The questions weren’t particularly remarkable, but his answers were … not great. That was the point of it. But it didn't really go anywhere constructive, so the whole thing just made me feel sad."

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​Hoffman and Oliver's original exchange mostly centered on groping and "inappropriate comments" allegations made by Anna Graham Hunter, as detailed in a guest column for the Hollywood Reporter in November. In the month since Hunter's column was published, more women have come forward. In a Varietyreport earlier this month, Hoffman was accused of exposing himself to a minor and sexually assaulting two other women.

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