Experts reveal how the actor survived a controversial year

Ezra Miller attends the Los Angeles Premiere of Warner Bros.

Ezra Miller attends the Los Angeles Premiere of Warner Bros. the flash at Ovation Hollywood on June 12, 2023 in Hollywood, CA (Photo: FilmMagic)

What controversy? Ezra Miller stepped out in Hollywood on Monday to support the flash, the actor’s biggest film to date. The premiere marked Miller’s first high-profile event since they were embroiled in scandal amid misconduct allegations for the past 15 months.

Miller, who is non-binary and uses they/them pronouns, vaguely addressed the elephant in the room. The actor, who stars in the upcoming blockbuster, gave a short speech ahead of the screening. They thanked the CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery, David Zaslav, and other studio heads for “your grace, discernment, and care in the context of my life. And for making this moment fruitful.”

The film, and specifically Miller, who plays multiple versions of the speedy superhero, has so far received positive reviews. Tom Cruise even called out director Andy Muschietti and praised the film. The actor’s co-stars support them. It’s been more than five years since the #MeToo movement swept Hollywood, resulting in the cancellation of many in the industry. Still, Miller appears to have escaped unscathed.

“Miller had a tough few years in the public eye, but yeah, with the release of the flash it seems that Hollywood has largely been willing to keep them around, and audiences’ enthusiasm for the film seems to imply that they’re willing to forgive and forget in favor of seeing their favorite characters back on screen.” Juda Engelmayer, president of HeraldPR, a New York-based crisis communications company, told Yahoo Entertainment, “That said, there’s an argument to be made that the studio has invested too much in this film and the DC Universe to drop this one.”

With Miller sidelined due to off-screen issues, much of the promotion for

With Miller sidelined due to off-screen issues, much of the promotion for the flash focused on the return of Michael Keaton as Batman and the introduction of Sasha Calle as Supergirl. (Photo: Alon Ami/Warner Bros.)

Miller first found themselves in trouble in 2020 when a video emerged showing them choking a woman outside a bar in Iceland. Last year, the 30-year-old actor was arrested twice in Hawaii, once for disorderly conduct and harassment and another for assault. In 2022, the Fantastic Beasts star pleaded guilty in their burglary case. Many of the troubling accusations that have been leveled in the past year centered on their treatment of minors. They have been accused of “sectarian” behavior and grooming young people on at least two occasions. They reportedly housed a woman and her three young children on their farm where guns and weeds were rampant. Despite the controversy, Warner Bros. moved forward with the theatrical release of the flashand by proxy, stood by his star.

Ronn Torossian, president and founder of 5WPR, believes that Miller was not treated differently “in the court of public opinion”, but “was given different treatment within his industry”. He notes how Warner Bros. recast Miller co-star Johnny Depp in Fantastic Beasts. Muschietti said that from now on, Miller would not be recast if there were to be any sequels to the flash.

“I don’t think there’s anyone who can play this character as well as them,” the director said on The speech podcast.

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The studio determined early on that remaking the film with an actor other than Miller was not an option. Production was largely complete when Miller’s behavior made headlines last year. Engelmayer, whose former clients include Harvey Weinstein and Anna Delvey, thinks it could have played a role in public perception as a decision to shelve the flash could have been “considered a badge of incrimination”.

“But since that didn’t happen and Miller apologized and said they were working on their mental health issues, the public sees nothing that Miller did serious enough to warrant his dismissal. “, he explains. “Miller has also been very quiet for the past few months, which has certainly helped them.”

In August, after police claimed he robbed a friend’s home in Vermont, Miller released his first statement after months of disturbing allegations.

“Having recently gone through a period of intense crisis, I now understand that I suffer from complex mental health issues and have begun ongoing treatment,” Miller said. “I want to apologize to everyone I have alarmed and upset about my past behavior. I am committed to doing the work necessary to get back to a healthy, safe and productive stage in my life.”

Torossian, whose specialty includes crisis communications, believes the statement was enough to keep the studio loyal to the actor as long as he stayed out of the spotlight. “Pulling yourself out of the public eye and continuing to work on yourself seems like the right decision,” he says.

“Mental health is complex and needs to be addressed in unique ways and at different levels of intensity for everyone. Sharing that Miller deals with complex mental health issues is a blanket answer. “Now knowing how complex these issues can be, however, if they plan to pursue a career in the spotlight, more specific answers will be sought by the public over time,” he adds.

It also helped Miller’s case that the public did not hear directly from the alleged victims.

“Ezra won’t face the full consequences of their actions until their alleged victims are the ones to take action against them, until then it’s kind of ‘innocent until proven guilty,'” shares Torossian. “While this is a pass, it should be remembered that every allegation is harmful no matter who it comes from and their reputation may never fully recover.”

Ezra Miller arrives at the premiere of

Ezra Miller arrives at the premiere of the flash on June 12, 2023 in Los Angeles. (Photo: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Although Miller attended the world premiere earlier this week, the actor was not included in the studio’s press tour. The studio focused a lot of attention on Michael Keaton adapting again as Batman and the introduction of Sasha Calle as Supergirl, while Calle and Muschietti did the heavy lifting on the interview circuit. So, will Miller be the studio’s scapegoat? the flash disappoint at the box office?

“With Michael Keaton returning as Batman, it’s hard to imagine the film being anything other than a hit,” Engelmayer shares. “It’s hard to say if Miller will be included at this time. I imagine the studio will be very calculated in how it handles future appearances – weighing the potential for future erratic behavior against the promise of success. financial.”

Engelmayer continues, “Historically, these studios seem to deal with flops by just doing the same thing over again with new actors. I wouldn’t imagine that would be an exception, although we might see studio executives blaming Miller if things go wrong. But even that, I think, is unlikely.”

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