Armie Hammer Won't Return to Broadway Play 'to Focus on Myself and My Health'
Weeks after denying rape charges and mired in rumors and accusations about his treatment of women, actor Armie Hammer has broken his silence to say he will not return to the Tracy Letts play "The Minutes" when Broadway reopens post-pandemic later this year.
Variety reports Hammer said, via statement, “I have loved every single second of working on ‘The Minutes’ with the family I made from Steppenwolf. But right now I need to focus on myself and my health for the sake of my family. Consequently, I will not be returning to Broadway with the production.”
In a show of support, the team of "The Minutes" said in response, “Armie remains a valued colleague to all of us who have worked with him onstage and offstage on ‘The Minutes.’ We wish only the best for him and respect his decision.”
"The Minutes," first staged in 2017, had been in previews when COVID-19 shut it down.
Hammer — who will next be seen in the remake of "Death on the Nile," shot prior to the allegations that have rocked his career — now has no future projects on tap. He was dropped from the thriller "Billion Dollar Spy," replaced by Dan Stevens in the Starz series "Gaslit," and bowed out of the Jennifer Lopez rom-com "Shotgun Wedding," which will feature Josh Duhamel in his place.
A woman named Effie stepped forward in March with serious allegations of mental, emotional, and sexual abuse against Hammer, who forcefully denied her claims.
Variety reported that Effie, who had a four-year relationship with Hammer, spoke out at a press conference with her lawyer Gloria Allred, saying of the incident, “I thought he was going to kill me.”
“On April 24, 2017, Armie Hammer violently raped me for over four hours in Los Angeles,” she alleged. “During which he repeatedly slapped my head against a wall bruising my face. He also committed other acts of violence against me to which I did not consent.”
Effie, 24, claimed that Armie also beat her feet during the rape “so they would hurt” when she walked. She said he “wouldn’t let me” get away.
Hammer’s attorney Andrew Brettler, of Lavely & Singer, denied the rape allegation to Variety, stating, “From day one, Mr. Hammer has maintained that all of his interactions with [Effie] — and every other sexual partner of his for that matter — have been completely consensual, discussed and agreed upon in advance, and mutually participatory.”
Effie said she met Hammer via Facebook and “fell in love with him instantly.” As their relationship continued, she said she now sees he used “clear manipulation tactics.”
“He would often test my devotion to him,” Effie stated, adding, “He abused me mentally, emotionally, and sexually.”
Allred would not disclose if Effie is the same woman who made accusations against Hammer on an Instagram account called House of Effie.
Meanwhile, The L.A. Times reported the Los Angeles Police Department is currently investigating Hammer after a woman accused him of sexual assault. That investigation is thought to be ongoing.
A source told the paper the woman who filed the report on February 3 was Effie.
In his denial to Variety, Brettler stated, “Effie’s own correspondence with Mr. Hammer undermines and refutes her outrageous allegations. As recently as July 18, 2020, [she] sent graphic texts to Mr. Hammer telling him what she wanted him to do to her. Mr. Hammer responded making it clear that he did not want to maintain that type of relationship with her.”
Brettler provided a text screengrab he claimed was sent from Effie to Armie that said, “I am not going to be able to engage in you in that specific way right now. It never ends well. We can talk and be friends, but I can’t do that.”
The attorney said it was “just one of hundreds” that she sent the actor.
Brettler’s statement continued, “It was never Mr. Hammer’s intention to embarrass or expose [Effie’s] fetishes or kinky sexual desires, but she has now escalated this matter to another level by hiring a civil lawyer to host a public press conference. With the truth on his side, Mr. Hammer welcomes the opportunity to set the record straight. From day one, Mr. Hammer has maintained that all of his interactions with [Effie] — and every other sexual partner of his for that matter — have been completely consensual, discussed and agreed upon in advance, and mutually participatory. [Effie’s] attention seeking and ill-advised legal bid will only make it more difficult for real victims of sexual violence to get the justice they deserve.”
Hammer faced criticism starting in January after unverified direct messages purporting to be from him surfaced that included discussion of kinky sex acts and drinking blood.
At that time, Hammer told “E! News” in a statement, “I’m not responding to these bulls--t claims." He said his children were key to his decision not to leave to film "Shotgun Wedding" in the Dominican Republic.