Jessica Walter says Jeffrey Tambor verbally harassed her
Jessica Walter has forgiven Jeffrey Tambor for what she says was verbal harassment by her “Arrested Development” costar.
In an interview with The New York Times published Wednesday, Walter talked about what happened with Tambor.
“[Tambor] never crossed the line on our show, with any, you know, sexual whatever,” Walter said. “Verbally, yes, he harassed me, but he did apologize.”
Tambor, 73, faced allegations of sexual harassment in November, during his time starring on “Transparent.” The allegations prompted an investigation by the show’s producer Amazon Studios, which decided to remove Tambor from the hit series.
One of his accusers claimed Tambor “made lewd, sexually suggestive and unwelcome remarks to her on a number of occasions,” according to Deadline, which first reported the allegations.
“Transparent” actress Trace Lysette also accused Tambor of making sexual advances and comments toward her.
The actor has said that the allegations against him are “simply and utterly untrue.”
Tambor described Amazon’s investigation as “deeply flawed and biased toward the toxic politicized atmosphere that afflicted our set.”
The Hollywood Reporter published an interview with Tambor earlier this month in which he talked about the “Transparent” controversy and acknowledged acting “difficult” and “mean.” He also referenced a “blowup” with his “Arrested Development” costar Walter, but he did not give specifics. She declined to comment to the publication at the time.
Walter, who stars as family matriarch Lucille Bluth opposite Tambor’s patriarch George Oscar Bluth, Sr., and Tambor sat down with The Times and other cast members Jason Bateman , Alia Shawkat, Will Arnett, David Cross and Tony Hale to promote Season 5 of their Netflix series.
In an audio excerpt of the story, talk turned to the allegations against Tambor.
“Not to belittle it or excuse it or anything, but in the entertainment industry it is incredibly common to have people who are, in quotes, ‘difficult,'” Bateman said.
“And when you’re in a privileged position to hire people, or have an influence in who does get hired, you make phone calls,” Bateman added. “And you say, ‘Hey, so I’ve heard X about person Y, tell me about that.’ And what you learn is context.”
Bateman continued speaking about behavior in the industry.
“It’s a very amorphous process, this sort of bulls**t that we do, you know, making up fake life,” he said. “It’s a weird thing, and it is a breeding ground for atypical behavior and certain people have certain processes.”
Shawkat, the only female cast member other than Walter present, interjected.
“But that doesn’t mean it’s acceptable,” she said. “And the point is that things are changing and people need to respect each other differently.”
Walter, who sounded tearful, then spoke of having to “let go” of her anger at Tambor if they were to continue their friendship.
“But it’s hard because honestly, Jason says this happens all the time,” she said. “In like almost 60 years of working, I’ve never had anybody yell at me like that on a set. And it’s hard to deal with, but I’m over it now.”
She went on to say that she has to give Tambor a chance to be friends again.
Tambor replied, “absolutely.”
“I profusely have apologized. Ms. Walter is indeed a walking acting lesson. And on “Transparent,” you know, I had a temper and I yelled at people and I hurt people’s feelings. And that’s unconscionable, and I’m working on it and I’m going to put that behind me, and I love acting,” he said to the New York Times.
Walter was the subject of a great deal of sympathy on social media and Bateman was roasted for appearing to downplay her experience.
On Thursday, Bateman tweeted his regret saying he does not condone the behavior.
“This is a big learning moment for me,” he tweeted. “I shouldn’t have tried so hard to mansplain, or fix a fight, or make everything okay.”
CNN has reached out to reps for Walter and Tambor for additional comment.