(LOS ANGELES) — It didn’t take long for Jason Bateman to respond to criticism he brushed aside Arrested Development co-star Jessica Walter’s comments about poor on-set treatment by Jeffrey Tambor. Bateman is apologizing online, saying he’s “incredibly embarrassed and deeply sorry” for his comments.
In case you missed it: Jessica Walter used a New York Times interview published Wednesday to publicly confirm that Tambor verbally harassed her on the show’s set in the past. “He never crossed the line on our show, with any, you know, sexual whatever. Verbally, yes, he harassed me, but he did apologize,” Walter 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.”
Bateman came to Tambor’s defense, saying, “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’s comments drew the ire of Twitter users, calling him out for his “boys club mentality” and chiding him for explaining “how the industry works.”
Bateman quickly responded in a series of tweets, writing in part: “I realize that I was wrong here. I sound like I’m condoning yelling at work. I do not. It sounds like I’m excusing Jeffery. I do not. It sounds like I’m insensitive to Jessica. I am not.”
Bateman says he was “so eager to let Jeffrey know that he was supported in his attempt to learn, grow and apologize that I completely underestimated the feelings of the victim, another person I deeply love – and she was sitting right there!”
“I’m incredibly embarrassed and deeply sorry to have done that to Jessica. …I deeply, and sincerely, apologize.”
Tambour was fired from his Amazon series, Transparent, earlier this year for his on-set behavior following sexual harassment allegations lodged against him by his former personal assistant, Van Barnes, and actress Trace Lysette.
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