Arrow star Stephen Amell clarifies strike comments following backlash

stephen amell
Arrow star Stephen Amell clarifies strike commentsMichael Kovac - Getty Images

Arrowverse star Stephen Amell has clarified his controversial comments about the ongoing SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) strike after receiving intense backlash.

When asked for his thoughts on the strike at the GalaxyCon fan convention on July 30, Amell said that, while he supports his union, he believes the action is "myopic", "incredibly frustrating" and a "reductive negotiating tactic".

The actor's comments drew in a significant amount of criticism from industry peers, including his former Arrowverse co-stars Matt Letscher and Kirk Acevedo.

stephen amell stands looking at the camera with a neutral facial expression, he has brown hair and beard, he wears a cap backwards, grey tshirt, blue denim jacket and jeans
Jesse Grant - Getty Images

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However, Amell has now taken to Instagram to clarify his thoughts, writing: "To ensure there is no misunderstanding about my thoughts and intentions I'm providing what I actually said and clarity/context to ensure my feelings aren't unintentionally misinterpreted."

After explaining that his support for the union is "unconditional," Amell said his comments about not supporting the strike were "off the cuff" and "contradictory to my true feelings and my emphatic statement that I stand with my union".

"Of course I don’t like striking. Nobody does. But we have to do what we have to do," he added.

stephen amell
Michael Kovac - Getty Images

As for calling the action "incredibly frustrating" and a "reductive negotiating tactic," Amell clarified: "I’m an actor and I was speaking extemporaneously for over an hour. I emote, but I certainly don’t think these issues are simple.

"Our leadership has an incredibly complicated job and I am grateful for all that they do. Despite some of my terrible early acting work, I assure you, I’m not a robot.

"From an intellectual perspective, I understand why we are striking, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t emotionally frustrating on many levels for all involved."

stephen amell
Mike Coppola - Getty Images

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The actor went onto admit he had "no clue" what he was trying to say when referring to the strike as "myopic", adding that it was an "inarticulate" way of saying he's upset he can't celebrate and promote the second season of his Starz show Heels.

Concluding his lengthy statement, Amell said: "As I said from the jump, I want to ensure that my thoughts and intentions are not misconstrued.

"This situation reminds me of the proverb, "the road to hell is paved with good intentions", which apparently, after reading a limited amount of the commentary, is a place many of you would like me to visit.

"However, at least for the foreseeable future, I choose to stand with my union. When you see me on a picket line, please don’t whip any hard fruit."

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