Richard Dreyfuss causes theater walkout with comments at “Jaws” screening

The theater issued an apology: "We understand that his remarks were distressing and offensive to many of our community members."

A Memorial Day weekend screening of Jaws left the audience with a lot more than nostalgia for the toothy Steven Spielberg classic.

A sold-out event at the Cabot Theater in Beverly, Mass., on Saturday was billed as a screening and chat with one of the 1975 film's stars, Richard Dreyfuss, but Dreyfuss' comments subsequently prompted the venue to apologize to its customers.

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<p>Presley Ann/Getty</p> Richard Dreyfuss pictured in 2023

Presley Ann/Getty

Richard Dreyfuss pictured in 2023

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"We are aware of, and share serious concerns, following the recent event with Richard Dreyfuss prior to a screening of the film Jaws at The Cabot," J. Casey Soward, the executive director of the Cabot said in a statement to Entertainment Weekly. "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.

"We regret that an event that was meant to be a conversation to celebrate an iconic movie instead became a platform for political views," the statement continued. "We take full responsibility for the oversight in not anticipating the direction of the conversation and for the discomfort it caused to many patrons.

"We are in active dialogue with our patrons about their experience and are committed to learning from this event how to better enact our mission of entertaining, educating, and inspiring our community.

"We kindly request respect for the privacy of our patrons and staff as we work through this matter. Thank you for your understanding," the Cabot statement concluded.

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Entertainment Weekly has reached out to a representatives of Dreyfuss for comment.

Video allegedly taken at the event show the veteran actor coming out on stage wearing a dress over pants and a shirt. Before removing the dress, he dances around as Taylor Swift's song "Love Story" plays and the crowd laughs, claps, and whistles.

In the comments section of the Cabot's apology on Facebook, people who said they had attended the event wrote that Dreyfuss' comments were sexist and homophobic. While it's unclear exactly what was said, some people on social media said his words referenced women and the LGBTQ+ community, and that some in the crowd shouted and booed in response.

Facebook user Beth Carroll wrote in response to the Cabot's posting about the event: "i chose to leave because i choose not to support people who think i shouldn't have equal rights or that my friends should not exist. frankly, i should have known dreyfuss's views before i bought tickets. but i didn't. so i chose to remove myself from the situation."

Read the original article on Entertainment Weekly.