Aaron Sorkin doesn’t have a lot of sympathy for Scott Rudin, the former Hollywood power producer whose reign in showbiz exploded amid a barrage of abuse allegations. In a new interview with Vanity Fair, Sorkin says that his former partner, whom he worked with on The Social Network, The Newsroom, Steve Jobs, and To Kill A Mockingbird, which is about to re-open on Broadway, got “what he deserves.”
“Listen, I think Scott got what he deserves,” Sorkin said when pressed if he had seen or was aware of Rudin’s behavior. “He’s lying flat on the mat right now, and I don’t know how it’s helpful for me to stand on his torso and kind of jump up and down.”
Sorkin also denies any knowledge of Rudin’s behavior, calling the bullying he witnessed “higher class,” like something out of The Devil Wears Prada. No violence, so that makes it ok! The Devil Wears Prada, as we all know, has since gone on to become the gold standard for how bosses should treat their employees.
I’ll tell you that in a number of the follow-up stories that I read, you’ll see people quoted saying, “Everybody knew, everybody knew.” And that’s ludicrous. Everybody did not know. I certainly didn’t know, and I don’t know anybody who knew. First of all, I have my own experience with Scott, and it’s a higher class of bullying, but I get it. The stories that I had heard over the last 12 years were the kinds of things that—they could have been scenes from The Devil Wears Prada, there was no violence. There’s nothing physical at all in the stories that I heard.
Of course, Sorkin denies knowing about Rudin’s behavior, even if the allegations were kind of a well-known secret in and out of Hollywood. As Gawker points out, the press reported on Rudin’s behavior over the years. In 2014, Page Six published “The man known as Hollywood’s biggest a-hole,” which, among other things, describes Rudin forcing an assistant out of his car on the Triborough Bridge after the assistant picked him up late.
Sorkin also must’ve missed the 2005 Wall Street Journal article “Boss-zilla!,” which paints Rudin as the “most feared boss in Hollywood.” Of course, he’s not the only one to plead ignorance. Last week, Academy Award winners Joel Coen and Frances McDormand also denied knowledge of Rudin’s behavior. Then again, Hollywood bigwigs must be the only ones who don’t talk about this kind of thing. It’s only their co-workers, after all.