Jeff Garlin Responds to Misconduct Allegations on Set on ‘The Goldbergs’, Insists He ‘Was Not Fired’
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Jeff Garlin responds to reports that his conduct on the set of “The Goldbergs” made people “uncomfortable” and contributed to an atmosphere that some found “demeaning or unprofessional.”
In a candid interview with Vanity Fairof Maureen Ryan, Garlin refuted rumors that he had been fired from the ABC sitcom.
âNo, I wasn’t fired from ‘The Goldbergs’. I wasn’t fired from the âGoldbergs,â Garlin said.
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However, Garlin revealed that he had been the subject of “an HR investigation on me for the past three years.” HR came to see me three years in a row for my behavior on set, “but insisted that” to be honest with you, there is no story. And I say that in all sincerity, because that’s what confuses me. Even with Sony – we have a difference of opinion, Sony and myself. OK. My opinion is that I have my process of how funny I am, in terms of the scene and what to do. They believe this creates a “dangerous” workspace. Now notice, my foolishness to create an unsafe workspace – I don’t understand how it is. And I’m on a comedy show. I am always a kind and caring person. I make mistakes, of course. But my comedy is about relieving people’s pain. Why would I ever want to cause someone pain for laughing? It is intimidation. It’s just out of place.
Faced with claims that people on set have felt “repeatedly humiliated and disrespectful” by Garlin’s choice of language and “physical actions”, Garlin shared his suspicion that someone on set “Takes it out on him”.
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âI have to be honest with you. I don’t even know how to respond to that because as a comedian if anyone is offended by what I’m saying all I can say is I’m sorry. OK? I have never physically come to anyone for any reason, so I find it terribly confusing and wrong. Look, I discussed this with the main team. The camera department, the sound department, the lighting department, and all those people who worked on my own movie – I made a Netflix movie called “Handsome” – never had a problem. There was nothing. So whoever feels this has it all for me. This is my real conviction. I would never put myself physically in someone. And I would never say something hateful to anyone.
The crux of Garlin’s argument is that he’s a comedian who pushes the boundaries. âIf I say something stupid and offensive, and I work in an insurance company, I think it’s a different situation. If, as the star of the show, I demanded a shooting range and on set, and fired shots every day and was a bit of a coward, for me that’s an atmosphere. dangerous work. If I have threatened people, it is a dangerous work atmosphere. None of this ever happens with me. It’s not who I am. I’m sorry to tell you that there really isn’t a big story. Unless you want to make a fuss about political correctness.
One of the issues at the heart of HR complaints has been Garlin’s tendency to hug people, whether they are welcome or not. He admitted that âI’m a definite hugger. And those are quick hugs, but I didn’t realize anyone was feeling – so if you want to write this story, it’s a true story. It’s up to them to say something, and I would respect anyone who says, âPlease don’t give me a hug. I don’t feel comfortable.
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Garlin also denied the allegation that he “texted a colleague at ‘Goldbergs’ saying they should go to the next reading table wearing only panties. “
âI didn’t write those words. And I would like to see the text and to whom I sent it. But all I write like that is for fun. I am respectful of women and of women’s bodies. And I don’t make jokes about it, because I don’t find it funny, âhe said.
“I’m telling you I don’t speak that way,” he added. “That’s all, I just told you. It’s not in my MO really. It’s not.”
As for his future on âThe Goldbergs,â Garlin admitted that things are very changeable right now.
âWe’re trying to get to a place where we come to an agreement. Either I can behave like this [they want] or not. We will see, but I am not made redundant and I was not made redundant, âhe explained. âWe’re talking about what we’re going to do, but there will be no layoffs. I’m going to be working more on ‘The Goldbergs’ just to let you know I’m in touch with Sony. I will shoot more days in the series. When I shoot for more days, just to make it go well, I won’t do any of my nonsense or whatever, out of respect. I’m just gonna keep it on the QT, because you know why? They are my bosses. And they have every right to have the decor as they wish.
Responding to People, a spokesperson for Sony Pictures Television said, âThe well-being of our cast and crew is of the utmost importance to us. It’s an employment issue and it’s handled by HR and production.