John Oliver addresses his heated exchange with Dustin Hoffman over sexual misconduct allegations: 'I'm staggered if he honestly thought I wasn't going to bring it up'

  • At a Q&A on Monday, comedian John Oliver addressed his December interview with actor Dustin Hoffman.

  • In the interview, Oliver asked Hoffman about the allegations of sexual misconduct that had surfaced against him, and the conversation got heated.
  • Oliver said Monday, “I just felt it would be really weird not to bring it up,” and said he wanted to get Hoffman to a point of self reflection in their conversation.

In discussing his viral Q&A with Dustin Hoffman, comedian John Oliver said it would have been “very, very weird” if he’d interviewed Hoffman without addressing the allegations of sexual misconduct against him.

Oliver also said he wanted Hoffman to get to a point of “self reflection” in their conversation, but that didn’t happen.

In December, the “Last Week Tonight” host confronted Hoffman over allegations of sexual misconduct during a heated exchange at a film screening, which The Washington Post captured on video.

Hoffman’s responses were glib, and at one point he asked Oliver, “Do you believe this stuff that you’re reading?”

“I believe what she wrote, yes,” Oliver replied. “Because there’s no point in her lying.”

In this back-and-forth, the pair was discussing a November column in The Hollywood Reporter, in which Anna Graham Hunter accused Hoffman of groping and sexually harassing her when she was a 17-year-old intern on the set of the 1985 movie, “Death of a Salesman.” After Hunter came foward with her accusation, multiple women shared other stories about Hoffman’s alleged misconduct.

During a Q&A at the HBO offices in New York on Monday, Oliver spoke about the interview, saying, “I just felt it would be really weird not to bring it up.”

Oliver added that he was “surprised” Hoffman even showed up to the interview.

“It felt like he should have been aware that he was going to have to answer this the next time he answered to anything,” Oliver said. “I’m staggered if he honestly thought I wasn’t going to bring it up. I don’t know how little he would have to think of me in order to think I wouldn’t bring that up. That’s pretty insulting.”

Oliver said that as the first person to interview Hoffman after the allegations came out, he felt a responsibility to bring them up in their conversation.

“I think it’s just the first person who’s going to have to talk to [Hoffman] was going to have to ask him the first questions about it,” Oliver said. “So unfortunately that was me … I have to believe that most people would have asked him about it. And then the only reason the conversation kept going was that his responses were pretty bad. I wanted to try to get him to a point of self reflection, to try and get something out of the conversation at all, but that didn’t happen. I don’t think there was anything particularly remarkable about what I was asking him.”

When asked about Hoffman’s reaction to the interview, Oliver replied: “He said, ‘It was a really fun evening.’ Of course he didn’t. No. He didn’t say that.”

“Last Week Tonight” returns for season 5 Sunday, February 18 on HBO.

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