I’ve heard Matthew McConaughey on a couple of podcasts in the last few months promoting his memoir, which is not about acting or anything but sounds more self-help-y (Marc Maron basically told him that if anyone else had written it, he’d have hated it, but that he appreciated that McConaughey actually believed the bullshit he was peddling). You get to know a person better in these hour-long podcast conversations, and this is what I’ll say about McConaughey: Nice guy, a little eccentric, and way up his own ass. He’s interesting and charming, don’t get me wrong. But he really buys into his own myth.
Mr. McConaughey recently appeared on the podcast of alt-right, men’s rights activist Jordan Peterson, whom McConaughey actually acknowledged in his memoir — McConaughey thanks Peterson for inspiring him to write his book. McConaughey must have thought, “If people are buying this guy’s bullshit, I bet they’ll buy mine, too!” (McConaughey joins Charlie Hunnam, sadly, in the Jordan Peterson fan club). McConaughey thinks that Peterson has a lot of good things to say about political correctness and cancel culture, two of the bigger bogeymen for successful actors who want to hang on to their success. McConaughey also seems to sympathize with Jordan Peterson’s belief that Louis C.K. got a bad rap. From the Daily Beast:
“When I see someone like Louis C.K., for example, pilloried terribly, I think, ‘Well, yeah he did some things that were unseemly—certainly even by his own standards, obviously,’” Peterson said. (For those who need a refresher: that “unseemly” act would be that C.K., by his own admission, masturbated in front of women who’d never consented.)
“So what do we make of that?” Peterson continued. “Well, there’s plenty of people who do unseemly things but not—but very few of them are as masterful a comedian as Louis C.K. So do we want to lose him because he’s flawed?”
“Right,” McConaughey replied.
“It seems inappropriate, because we’d lose everybody that way,” Peterson said. “And then we just have loss. That’s not helpful.”
“Yes. Yes!” McConaughey said. “I mean, I think you’re leaning into a lot of what we call cancel culture today. You know, in the name of rehabilitation, we have to have a world in which we are able to grow and evolve, if that’s what we’re trying to do. Now… I’m not for repeat offenders or tyrants, but if someone screws up and they have sincere—they sincerely want retribution (sic), I think it’s fair to give…”
It should be noted that Louis C.K. is, in fact, a repeat offender, and that he’s never really sought “retribution (sic).”
Speaking of McConaughey, he’s also stepped away from Redeemer, an FX drama that was meant to reunite him with the writer of the first season of True Detective, Nic Pizzolatto. No reason was given, although there’s been plenty of rumors about Pizzolatto’s on-set behavior not being great, alluded to by the director of the first season of True Detective, Cary Fukunaga. In fact, splits with Pizzolatto are not uncommon — director Jeremy Saulnier left True Detective season 3 after two episodes.
Likewise, without Redeemer, FX itself is negotiating an exit deal with Pizzolatto. They aren’t interested in keeping him around without a McConaughey-backed project. Pizzolatto wants to get out of his three-year first-look deal only one year into the contract, although to be fair, hard-edged showrunners at FX haven’t exactly gotten along with their new Disney overlords, so this may just be more of the same. Then again, why did Pizzolatto and HBO part ways after a semi-successful partnership? THR notes that “all parties involved agreed that it was time to part ways,” which sounds like a euphemistic way of saying that they all hated each other’s guts.
Hat Tip: Randall W