The entire cast of Arrested Development has been asked about working with Jeffrey Tambor. And it appears all are OK working with the actor.
Tambor was ousted from Amazon's Transparent after several transgender actresses and crewmembers on the show came forward with stories of sexual misconduct involving him.
In the question and answer, The New York Times reporter Sopan Deb raised “the elephant in the room, which is the allegations from the Transparent set.” Deb asked Tambor whether he expected to be part of future seasons of Arrested Development on Netflix.
“I surely hope so,” said Tambor.
“Well, I won’t do it without you. I can tell you that,” said co-star Jason Bateman. “And there’s no reason he shouldn’t,” Bateman would add later. At least in the excerpt that ran, the men spoke the most about their support for Tambor, sometimes cracking jokes.
Tambor recalled sending an email to the cast thanking them for their support and apologizing “for the distraction and you have to be asked these questions and such.”
Alia Shawkat, who is bisexual, is the only other cast member to appear in both shows—Transparent and Arrested Development. She was asked about the differences between the two sets in a question cut from the interview but shared on Twitter by Deb afterward.
“They were very different but I felt very safe and comfortable on the Transparent set, not that I didn’t on this one,” she said, explaining that Transparent was a more “touchy-feely environment, where it was all about feeling each other’s energies and getting this kind of proper zone that felt very comfortable.”
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Tambor denied any wrongdoing at Transparent but confessed to screaming at colleagues at times, including the show’s creator Jill Soloway. Among the list of people he confessed to yelling at during his career was Arrested Development co-star Jessica Walter.
“Let me just say one thing that I just realized in this conversation,” Walter said during the Times interview. “I have to let go of being angry at him. He never crossed the line on our show, with any, you know, sexual whatever. Verbally, yes, he harassed me, but he did apologize. I have to let it go. [Turns to Tambor.] And I have to give you a chance to, you know, for us to be friends again.”
Bateman was Tambor’s greatest defender, even over the actor’s anger on set. Bateman said acting is “a breeding ground for atypical behavior and certain people have certain processes.”
“But that doesn’t mean it’s acceptable,” interjected Shawkat. “And the point is that things are changing, and people need to respect each other differently.”
Walter added, “Jason says this happens all the time. In like almost 60 years of working, I’ve never had anybody yell at me like that on a set.”
Portia de Rossi, the show’s other prominent woman, was not there for the interview, having recently confirmed during an appearance on her wife Ellen DeGeneres’s show that she’s retired from acting altogether. She told Entertainment Tonight, though, the she is supportive of Tambor: “I love Jeffrey, he’s great, he’s been a pal for many, many years, and I wish him well. We support him.”
Check the Times site for audio from the interview. And watch red carpet coverage of Tambor and his cast mates in the video below.