Emma Thompson Explains Her Refusal to Work With John Lasseter: Why Give Him a ‘Second Chance’?

“The message seems to be, ‘I am learning to feel respect for women so please be patient while I work on it. It’s not easy,'” the actress writes in letter after exiting Skydance’s ‘Luck’

Last Updated: February 26, 2019 @ 12:18 PM

Emma Thompson, who quit a Skydance Animation film this month after the company hired former Pixar head John Lasseter, challenged the company about why it was giving the executive “a second chance” after the multiple accusations of sexual misconduct in his previous gig.

In a letter to Skydance executives obtained by the L.A. Times, the Oscar-winning actress questioned why women should feel comfortable working under Lasseter. She also challenged a letter that Skydance CEO David Ellison has sent to staffers saying that Lasseter was contractually obligated to behave professionally.

“If a man has been touching women inappropriately for decades, why would a woman want to work for him if the only reason he’s not touching them inappropriately now is that it says in his contract that he must behave ‘professionally,'” Thompson wrote. “The message seems to be, “I am learning to feel respect for women so please be patient while I work on it. It’s not easy.'”

Earlier this month, Thompson pulled out of a voice role for the animated film “Luck,” citing Lasseter’s hiring as her reason for leaving the project.

In her letter, Thompson said that she loved the director of the film “Luck,” Alessandro Carloni, and that she regretted her decision to leave the project but felt it necessary to continue to speak out.

“I can only do what feels right during these difficult times of transition and collective consciousness raising,” Thompson said. “I am well aware that centuries of entitlement to women’s bodies whether they like it or not is not going to change overnight. Or in a year. But I am also aware that if people who have spoken out — like me — do not take this sort of a stand then things are very unlikely to change at anything like the pace required to protect my daughter’s generation.”

Thompson and Skydance had no comment.

Read the full letter via the L.A. Times.