Richard Dreyfuss’ Alleged Sexist, Transphobic Comments Spark Controversy at Jaws Event

Richard Dreyfuss’ controversial comments at a Jaws event lead to audience walkouts and backlash.

Richard Dreyfuss in 2023. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GA/THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER VIA GETTY)
Richard Dreyfuss in 2023. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GA/THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER VIA GETTY)

Richard Dreyfuss, the veteran actor known for his role in the iconic film Jaws, faced significant backlash following his appearance at a screening of the film in Beverly, Massachusetts.

The event, held at The Cabot theater on May 25, was billed as “An Evening with Richard Dreyfuss + Jaws Screening” and was intended to provide fans with behind-the-scenes insights into the making of the classic film.

However, the evening took an unexpected and controversial turn, resulting in numerous audience members walking out.

Attendees at The Cabot theater anticipated an enjoyable night filled with anecdotes and reflections on Jaws. However, the event deviated sharply from these expectations.

Dreyfuss, 76, made his entrance wearing a dress to the backdrop of Taylor Swift‘s “Love Story,” which set an unconventional tone for the evening. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the discussion soon shifted from film memories to Dreyfuss’s personal views on various social issues, including trans youth and the Academy Awards‘ inclusivity rules.

While there is no official transcript of Dreyfuss’s comments, social media reactions and reports from those in attendance suggest that the actor’s remarks began with comments about Barbra Streisand and escalated into what many perceived as sexist, transphobic, and otherwise offensive statements.

Richard Dreyfuss, Roy Scheider and Robert Shaw in Jaws (1975). (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, UNIVERSAL STUDIOS/COURTESY OF GETTY IMAGES)
Richard Dreyfuss, Roy Scheider and Robert Shaw in Jaws (1975). (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, UNIVERSAL STUDIOS/COURTESY OF GETTY IMAGES)

A Facebook user reported, “We walked out of his interview tonight along with hundreds of others because of his racist, homophobic, misogynistic rant.”

The immediate reaction from the audience was one of shock and dismay. Many attendees chose to leave the event in protest.

This mass walkout was a clear indication of the discomfort and offense caused by Dreyfuss’s remarks.

The incident quickly gained traction on social media, with numerous users expressing their disappointment and calling for accountability.

In the wake of the event, The Cabot theater issued an apology on May 27, acknowledging the concerns raised by patrons. In a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, the venue distanced itself from Dreyfuss’s views, emphasizing that they do not align with the theater’s values of inclusivity and respect.

The statement read, “We are aware of, and share serious concerns, following the recent event with Richard Dreyfuss… The views expressed by Mr. Dreyfuss do not reflect the values of inclusivity and respect that we uphold as an organization. We deeply regret the distress that this has caused to many of our patrons.”

The theater also took responsibility for the event’s direction, stating, “We regret that an event that was meant to be a conversation to celebrate an iconic movie instead became a platform for political views.

We take full responsibility for the oversight in not anticipating the direction of the conversation and for the discomfort it caused to many patrons.”

Richard Dreyfuss in 2023. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, BOBBY BANK/GETTY IMAGES)
Richard Dreyfuss in 2023. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, BOBBY BANK/GETTY IMAGES)

The statement concluded by committing to learning from the incident to better fulfill their mission of entertaining, educating, and inspiring the community.

This incident is not the first time Richard Dreyfuss has sparked controversy with his public comments. In 2023, he appeared on the PBS series Firing Line with Margaret Hoover, where he criticized the Academy’s diversity and inclusion requirements for Oscar eligibility.

Dreyfuss described these requirements as “patronizing” and expressed disdain for being told how to create art, stating, “They make me vomit… No one should be telling me as an artist that I have to give in to the latest, most current idea of what morality is.”

The backlash against Dreyfuss’s comments at The Cabot theater reflects a broader societal debate about the balance between freedom of expression and the need for inclusivity and respect in public discourse.

While some may argue for the actor’s right to express his views, the overwhelming response from the audience and the subsequent apology from The Cabot underscore the significant impact that such comments can have on communities and individuals.

As the controversy continues to unfold, it remains to be seen how Richard Dreyfuss and The Cabot theater will address the fallout from the event.

For now, the incident serves as a stark reminder of the importance of sensitivity and awareness in public forums, particularly when discussing issues that deeply affect marginalized communities.

The Cabot theater’s commitment to learning from this event and improving future programming may help restore trust and ensure that their events truly reflect the values of inclusivity and respect that they strive to uphold.

Sharing Is Caring:

Leave a Comment