Anna Faris alleges late director Ivan Reitman inappropriately touched her on the set of the 2006 rom-com My Super Ex-Girlfriend. On her latest episode of her Unqualified podcast Wednesday (October 19), the Mom actress disclosed that Reitman “slapped my a–” during the production and on her first day “yelled” at her, leaving her feeling “angry, hurt and humiliated.”
During a candid conversation with Girls actress Lena Dunham, Faris asked, “Can I speak ill of the dead? One of my hardest film experiences was with Ivan Reitman. I mean, the idea of attempting to make a comedy under this, like, reign of terror… he was a yeller. He would bring down somebody every day… and my first day, it was me.”
Faris, 45, said that she had to fight back tears during her intense first interaction with Reitman after she was late 20-25 minutes to set due to the hairstylist knocking over a quart of wig glue onto Faris’ Yves Saint Laurent sweater in hair and makeup. In response to Faris’s claim that Reitman slapped her behind after this incident, Dunham said, “I don’t think you’re the first person who’s reported that. And I’m so sorry you had that experience. And did no one step in and say, ‘No?'”
“No. It was, like, 2006,” responded Faris. “I’m going to lay low and play it safe. I am taking zero risk in this movie.” The actress described the incident in vague terms to Variety back in 2017, but hadn’t publicly named the director. “I was doing a scene where I was on a ladder and I was supposed to be taking books off a shelf and he slapped my a– in front of the crew so hard. And all I could do was giggle.” Faris admitted she didn’t know how to react so turned to humor as a defense mechanism.
“I remember looking around and I remember seeing the crew members being like, ‘Wait, what are you going to do about that? That seemed weird.’ And that’s how I dismissed it. I was like, ‘Well, this isn’t a thing. Like, it’s not that big of a deal. Buck up, Faris. Like, just giggle.’ But it made me feel small. He wouldn’t have done that to the lead male.”
The Scary Movie star said the filmmaker told her agent she was hired for the role because of her “great legs.” She revealed, “Listen, that’s a f—ing great compliment. I like my legs. But that sort of informed my whole experience with that whole project. I don’t think the male lead (Luke Wilson) got hired because he had great legs. Therefore I felt like I’m hired because of these elements — not because of [talent].”
Per Deadline, Gavin Polone, one of the producers for the film, said, “I never saw that incident, or heard about it, but I would not have any reason to dispute Anna’s account, either. If Anna says it happened, I believe her. If it had happened in front of me, I certainly would have confronted Ivan about it. I’m sad to think Anna was demeaned in that way.”
Reitman died February this year at 75. He is best known for directing Meatballs, the first two Ghostbusters movies, Twins and Kindergarten Cop.