Director Jane Campion has responded to Sam Elliott’s criticism of The Power of the Dog – her recently released Western movie starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, and Jesse Plemons – after the actor called it a “piece of shit”.
“I’m sorry, he was being a little bit of a B-I-T-C-H,” Campion told Variety (opens in new tab) on the red carpet at the Directors Guild of America (DGA). “He’s not a cowboy; he’s an actor. The West is a mythic space and there’s a lot of room on the range. I think it’s a little bit sexist.”
Campion went on to win the gong for Theatrical Feature Film at the DGA Awards, as well as taking home the awards for Best Film and Best Director at the BAFTAs, which took place on the same night. You can see the BAFTAs 2022 winners list in full here.
“What the fuck does this woman – she’s a brilliant director by the way, I love her work, previous work – but what the fuck does this woman from down there, New Zealand, know about the American West?,” Elliott said in his original comments on the WTF podcast (opens in new tab). “And why in the fuck does she shoot this movie in New Zealand and call it Montana and say, ‘This is the way it was.’ That fucking rubbed me the wrong way, pal.”
He also added: “They’re all running around in chaps and no shirts. There’s all these allusions to homosexuality throughout the fucking movie.”
The movie is also up for 12 Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director. Campion’s win at the DGA Awards seems to set her up to take home the statuette for the latter – the winner of the Theatrical Feature Film award has only differed from the Oscars Best Director winner seven times since the award’s inception in 1949.
The Power of the Dog is available to watch on Netflix now. If you’ve already seen it, fill out your watch list with our picks of the other best Netflix movies out there.