ABC/Randy Holmes(LOS ANGELES) — Jonah Hill has apologized for hurling a homophobic slur at a member of the paparazzi while walking in Los Angeles last weekend.
During an appearance Tuesday on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Hill said, “I genuinely am deeply sorry to anyone who’s ever been affected by that term in their life.”
The weekend incident occurred when photographers were following the actor in L.A.’s Larchmont neighborhood. Video obtained by TMZ shows Hill getting increasingly annoyed as the paparazzi follow him, ask him questions and make random comments to him such as, “I like the shorts…bro. They are pretty sexy.”
When one photog told Hill, “Have a good day. Enjoy,” the actor had had enough. He spat back: “Suck my d***, you f*****!”
During Tuesday’s Tonight Show appearance, Hill explained what drove him to use the slur. “There was a paparazzi guy and he was antagonizing me and calling me names, attacking me personally and my family personally and I was, I was genuinely hurt by this and made angry by this. And in response I wanted to hurt him back and I said the most hurtful word that I could think of at that moment.”
After Hill apologized and said he didn’t deserve or expect the public’s forgiveness, the actor told viewers, “…what I ask is that at home if you’re watching this and you’re a young person especially. If someone says something that hurts you or angers you, use me as an example of what not to do.”
Hill continued, “How you mean things doesn’t matter. Words have a weight in meaning and the word I chose was grotesque and you know, no one deserves to say or hear words like that. And you know, I’ve been a supporter of the LGBTQ community my entire life and I completely let the members of that community and everybody else down when I used a word like that this weekend.”
Last November, Hill used his celebrity to speak out against Russia’s anti-gay law. He told E! News at the time, “I have tons of gay friends, gay family members…I support anybody doing whatever they want to do to be who they are.”
Hill will next be seen on the big screen in 22 Jump Street, out next week.
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