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Ben Affleck apologises for groping Hilarie Burton in 2003

Affleck said he had acted inappropriately towards the actor on an episode of MTVs Total Request Live while another video of the star asking a journalist to expose herself has also come to light

Ben Affleck has apologised for groping the actor Hilarie Burton during an appearance on MTVs Total Request Live in 2003.

The former One Tree Hill actor criticised Affleck on Twitter shortly after he had released a statement condemning producer Harvey Weinstein for alleged acts of sexual harassment and abuse.

Burtons comments came in response to a Twitter user who said that Affleck grabbed Hilarie Burtons breasts on TRL once. Everyone forgot though. Burton, who co-hosted the live music show, replied: I didnt forget. Burton said she was just a kid when the incident allegedly happened. Girls. Im so impressed with you brave ones. I had to laugh back then so I wouldnt cry. Sending love, she later wrote.

Burton also provided a link to a supercut of highlights from the series, which included a clip of Affleck asking her: How old are you, 19? Burton was 21 when the scene was filmed.

Affleck apologised for the incident on Twitter. I acted inappropriately toward Mrs. Burton and I sincerely apologise, he wrote.

A video from 2004 has also been unearthed that shows the star asking Canadian journalist Anne-Marie Losique to expose herself while she sits on his lap during a junket for Miramax film Jersey Girl. These breasts are really firm, suspiciously firm,they are like two giant stones, he says to her. He also appears to touch her nipple, suggesting they recreate a Janet Jackson moment.

Later in the video he goes on to say: Dont make me look like I am retarded! I look like I have cerebral palsy.

Losique said in a 2001 interview that it became a tradition for her to sit on his lap whenever she spoke to him. Its something that started a long time ago, she said to the Los Angeles Times. Now Im always on his lap. I dont have to prepare anything. Its very easy. But I never get to ask him any questions. Never in five years.

Burtons comments came shortly after Affleck had been accused by actor Rose McGowan of lying about his knowledge of Weinsteins alleged sexual abuse of women following his statement, which did not indicate whether he had any prior knowledge of the producers past behaviour. Weinstein was an executive producer on Afflecks breakthrough film Good Will Hunting and worked with him on several other occasions.

McGowan, whom the New York Times reported had reached a $100,000 settlement with Weinstein over an incident in a hotel room in 1997, took to Twitter to criticise Afflecks response. GODDAMNIT! I TOLD HIM TO STOP DOING THAT you said that to my face. The press conf I was made to go to after assault. You lie, she wrote.

The New York Times later asked McGowan whether she was accusing Affleck of knowing about Weinsteins alleged acts towards her and of lying because his statement did not give any indication that he was aware of Weinsteins alleged past behaviour. I am saying exactly that, she said.

rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan)

@benaffleck GODDAMNIT! I TOLD HIM TO STOP DOING THAT you said that to my face. The press conf I was made to go to after assault. You lie.

October 10, 2017

Afflecks statement, and McGowans response to it, came in the wake of a bombshell New Yorker report that alleged Weinstein had raped three women. Weinstein said through a spokesperson that he unequivocally denied the allegations. Following the report, actors Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie made accusations of sexual harassment against the producer.

Weinsteins alleged behaviour has prompted a wave of condemnation from Weinsteins allies in politics, including Barack and Michelle Obama, whose daughter Malia had served as an intern in Weinsteins company earlier this year, and Hillary Clinton. However, several prominent figures in the entertainment industry with ties to Weinstein have yet to comment on the allegations, including Quentin Tarantino and McGowans former partner Robert Rodriguez.

McGowan has been an outspoken critic of Weinstein and those with ties to him in recent days. She has called on The Weinstein Company to dissolve its board over the scandal.

On Monday, she criticised Afflecks long-time co-writer Matt Damon, who at the time had not addressed the allegations against his friend Weinstein. Damon has since condemned Weinsteins alleged acts, but denied knowledge of his alleged past behaviour. If there was ever an event that I was at and Harvey was doing this kind of thing and I didnt see it, then I am so deeply sorry, because I would have stopped it, he told Deadline.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/us

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