Kiefer Sutherland Refutes Claims of Bullying Co-Stars on 'Stand by Me' Set

Kiefer Sutherland firmly denies allegations of bullying younger co-stars on the set of "Stand by Me," emphasizing his commitment to professionalism and respect in the entertainment industry.

Waqas Arain
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Kiefer Sutherland Refutes Claims of Bullying Co-Stars on 'Stand by Me' Set

Kiefer Sutherland Refutes Claims of Bullying Co-Stars on 'Stand by Me' Set

Kiefer Sutherland, the acclaimed actor known for his roles in films like 'Stand by Me' and the television series '24', has addressed recent allegations that he bullied his younger co-stars while filming the 1986 coming-of-age drama. During an appearance on the talk show 'The Talk', Sutherland firmly denied the claims, asserting that such behavior is not in line with his values as an actor or as a person.

The rumors, which had gained traction online, suggested that a 17-year-old Sutherland had mistreated his younger castmates, including Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman, and Jerry O'Connell, in order to maintain his character as a gang member in the film. However, Sutherland unequivocally stated, "It's absolutely not true. I'm not that kind of actor, and I wouldn't want to be that kind of person."

Sutherland's co-star Jerry O'Connell, who was also present on the show, corroborated his account, confirming that there was no bullying on set. O'Connell did admit, however, that he was initially intimidated by Sutherland due to their age difference and Sutherland's more established acting career at the time.

During the interview, Sutherland also reflected on his close friendship with the late River Phoenix, who was seven years his junior. The two bonded over their shared passion for playing guitar and would often engage in in-depth discussions about character development and the craft of acting. Sutherland expressed appreciation for the opportunities that 'Stand by Me' provided, acknowledging the film's significant impact on the lives and careers of the young cast.

Sutherland emphasized his commitment to professionalism and respect on set, stating that he has always strived to maintain a positive and supportive working environment. He expressed his desire to distance himself from any allegations of bullying or mistreatment, as such actions do not align with his values or his approach to his craft.

Why this matters: The allegations against Kiefer Sutherland, a prominent figure in the entertainment industry, have sparked important conversations about power dynamics and the treatment of young actors on film sets. Sutherland's strong denial of the claims and his emphasis on maintaining a respectful and professional work environment highlights the need for continued efforts to ensure the well-being and safety of all actors, particularly those who are underage or early in their careers.

In addressing the viral rumor head-on, Sutherland aimed to set the record straight and protect his reputation as an actor and an individual. His candid discussion of his close relationship with River Phoenix and the positive impact that 'Stand by Me' had on the lives of its young stars underscored the enduring legacy of the film and the importance of fostering supportive and nurturing environments in the entertainment industry.

Key Takeaways

  • Kiefer Sutherland denies allegations of bullying younger co-stars on "Stand by Me".
  • Co-star Jerry O'Connell confirms no bullying, but was initially intimidated by Sutherland.
  • Sutherland reflects on close friendship with late actor River Phoenix on set.
  • Sutherland emphasizes commitment to professionalism and respect on film sets.
  • Article highlights importance of ensuring well-being and safety of young actors.