Martin Scorsese knows that “The Wolf of Wall Street” is not for everyone, but he probably didn’t expect to be lambasted by an Academy member when he arrived for the official AMPAS members screening of his film on Saturday night.
But according to a Facebook post from actress Hope Holiday, that’s what happened. Referring to the graphic three-hour film about the sex-and-drug-filled lifestyle of stockbroker Jordan Belfort, and then to the arrival of Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater, she wrote:
“[L]ast night was torture at the Academy — ‘The Wolf Of Wall Street’ – three hours of torture – same disgusting crap over and over again – after the film they had a discussion which a lot of us did not stay for – the elevator doors opened and Leonardo D. Martin S. and a few others got out then a screen writer ran over to them and started screaming – shame on you – disgusting – ”
A Paramount rep who was with Scorsese said that no one screamed at the director, but admitted that one person offered “a negative comment.” The film’s talent didn’t stop to respond, because they were hurrying into the theater for a post-screening Q&A with Scorsese, DiCaprio, Jonah Hill and writer Terrence Winter.
When asked for additional details by TheWrap, Hope Holiday declined to identify the screenwriter who confronted Scorsese as he exited the elevator on the second floor. But she said that the screenwriter’s criticism of Scorsese was “a shocker,” and “very awkward and embarrassing” for others waiting for the elevator.
Some people at the screening, she added, did applaud the film, while others (“including myself”) hated it.
Others report healthy applause for the film, and for the panelists at the Q&A. The screening was reportedly very well attended, despite it being a three-hour film screening on the Saturday night before Christmas.
“It’s brutal,” admitted Scorsese in a conversation with TheWrap on Friday. “I’ve seen it with audiences, and I think it plays. I don’t know if it will be to everyone’s taste – I don’t think it will. It’s not made for 14 year olds.”
To be fair, the Facebook post and its subsequent comments showed that Holiday and her friends clearly aren’t the target audience for Scorsese’s film, either.
The 75-year-old actress, who appeared in “The Apartment” and “Irma la Douce,” among others, and her friends bashed current films, including “Inside Llewyn Davis,” and praised “White Christmas,” “When Harry Met Sally,” “As Good As it Gets” and “The Wizard of Oz.”
Holiday did say that she “liked” David O. Russell’s “American Hustle,” but found it “confusing.”
Saturday’s incident was not the first time that a Scorsese film has been rudely greeted by someone in an AMPAS audience. One longtime Academy member told TheWrap that at the members’ screening of Scorsese’s “Casino” in 1995, one man stood up in the middle of the film and screamed, “Disgusting! Pornography! Crap!” at the screen.
That film received one Oscar nomination for Sharon Stone’s lead performance.