“Green Book” writer and producer Nick Vallelonga has apologized for a 2015 anti-Muslim tweet that resurfaced after his Golden Globe win on Sunday, vowing to “do better.”
“I want to apologize,” Vallelonga said in a statement provided to TheWrap. “I spent my life trying to bring this story of overcoming differences and finding common ground to the screen, and I am incredibly sorry to everyone associated with ‘Green Book.'”
The statement continued: “I especially deeply apologize to the brilliant and kind Mahershala Ali, and all members of the Muslim faith, for the hurt I have caused. I am also sorry to my late father who changed so much from Dr. Shirley’s friendship and I promise this lesson is not lost on me. ‘Green Book’ is a story about love, acceptance and overcoming barriers, and I will do better.”
On Wednesday, a reporter unearthed the 2015 tweet, in which Vallelonga appeared to back then-presidential candidate Trump’s claim that he “watched when the World Trade Center came tumbling down. And I watched in Jersey City, New Jersey, where thousands and thousands of people were cheering as that building was coming down. Thousands of people were cheering.”
Vallelonga replied to Trump, “100% correct. Muslims in Jersey City cheering when towers went down. I saw it, as you did, possibly on local CBS news.”
But Trump’s version of events was challenged by major news outlets, including The New Yorker and The Washington Post, which, after trying to fact-check the story, concluded: “This is a bit like writing about the hole in the doughnut — how can you write about nothing?”
Vallelonga’s tweet was deleted Wednesday evening shortly after it was resurfaced. The writer’s entire Twitter account was deleted soon after.
It’s been a rough week for “Green Book.” Also on Wednesday, the film’s director, Peter Farrelly, apologized for repeatedly flashing his penis two decades ago in an attempt to be funny.
I've confirmed that #GreenBook producer Nick Vallelonga did tweet in 2015 that he saw "Muslims in Jersey City cheering when towers went down" on 9/11. That tweet and the account behind it have been deleted. Vallelonga had no comment. More here: https://t.co/9dfgg2tqVR
— Adam B. Vary (@adambvary) January 10, 2019