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Richard Dreyfuss Takes Stage At Massachusetts ‘Jaws’ Screening Wearing Dress Before Delivering Rant Described As Transphobic; Venue Apologizes

After taking the stage in a housedress and, at one point, swinging his cane like a baseball bat at a Massachusetts holiday weekend screening of JawsRichard Dreyfuss went on to deliver a rant described by attendees as transphobic, sexist and homophobic.

“This was disgusting,” posted one attendee on the Facebook page of The Cabot theater in Beverly, Massachusetts. “How could the Cabot not have vetted his act better. Apparently (I found out too late), he has a reputation for spewing this kind of racist, homophobic, misogynistic bullcrap.”

The incident occurred on Saturday night prior to the film screening. In a brief YouTube video taken by an audience member, Dreyfuss can be seen walking onto the stage for a Q&A wearing a floral print dress and shaking his hips in a mocking way.

At one point, as he slowly makes his way to his seat assisted by a cane, he wields the cane like a baseball bat toward the crowd.

In a statement of apology sent by the Cabot to attendees, obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, the venue wrote, “We are aware of, and share serious concerns, following the recent event with Richard Dreyfuss prior to a screening of the film Jaws at The Cabot. The views expressed by Mr. Dreyfuss do not reflect the values of inclusivity and respect that we uphold as an organization. We deeply regret the distress that this has caused to many of our patrons.

“We regret that an event that was meant to be a conversation to celebrate an iconic movie instead became a platform for political views. We take full responsibility for the oversight in not anticipating the direction of the conversation and for the discomfort it caused to many patrons.

“We are in active dialogue with our patrons about their experience and are committed to learning from this event how to better enact our mission of entertaining, educating and inspiring our community.”

Responded an attendee on Facebook, “While the apology from The Cabot to their patrons seems sincere, no refund has been offered. We did NOT get what we paid for (which we all assumed would be a light, fun evening listening to stories and anecdotes about RD’s time on the Vineyard making Jaws.) This was offensive and we demand a refund.”

Deadline has reached out to The Cabot and a rep for Dreyfuss for additional comment.

Dreyfuss apparently made similar comments at a Friday night Jaws screening at The Music Hall in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. “I live in Mass, but the Cabot showing was all booked so I saw him in NH on May 24,” a Facebook commenter wrote. “He made anti-gay remarks that night too.”

Wrote another Cabot audience member, “richard dreyfuss is an embarrassment to society. I walked out tonight because of his small minded bigoted view of women and choice.”

Dreyfuss has been an outspoken critic of Oscar inclusivity rules and trans youth affirming their gender. Last year on PBS’ Firing Line, the Goodbye Girl Oscar-winner said diversity efforts made by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences “make me vomit.”

“We’re so fragile that we can’t have our feelings hurt,” he said. “We don’t know how to stand up and bop the bully in the face.”

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