Casey Affleck has withdrawn from presenting the Best Actress award at the upcoming Oscars ceremony in March reports Deadline.
Affleck has reportedly notified the Academy he will not be attending the event with sources saying he made the decision because he did not want to become a distraction from the focus which should be on the performances in the category.
By awards tradition, the Best Actor winner of the previous year presents the award for the Best Actress the following year (and vice versa for the Best Actor award). Affleck’s win for “Manchester by the Sea” last year stirred minor controversy due to the settlement and non-disclosure agreements which followed allegations of inappropriate behaviour toward two women on the set of his directorial debut “I’m Still Here”.
A year on, and in the wake of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, the controversy surrounding him has only intensified. The proactive move takes away a point of controversy for the Oscars as the Academy itself has been under fire for the retaining of the likes of Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski as Academy members. The Oscars will air on March 4th.