Author and media personality Jordan Peterson got emotional when commenting on Olivia Wilde’s recent remarks about him.
Peterson visited Piers Morgan Uncensored on Wednesday, where host Piers Morgan asked about Wilde having told Interview magazine that Chris Pine’s villainous character in her film Don’t Worry Darling is based on Peterson. In her interview, published online earlier this month, Wilde called Peterson “this insane man” who is a “pseudo-intellectual hero to the incel community,” referring to men who identify as involuntarily celibate and are known to express negativity toward women on platforms including Reddit.
After Morgan asked if it’s fair to describe Peterson as a hero to men who are “despicable in many ways,” the guest replied, “Sure, why not. People have been after me for a long time because I’ve been speaking to disaffected young men — what a terrible thing to do, that is.” After a long pause in which his eyes appeared to well up with tears, Peterson said, “I thought the marginalized were supposed to have a voice.”
He continued, “It’s very difficult to understand how demoralized people are, and certainly many young men are in that category. And you get these casual insults: ‘These incels.’ What does that mean? Well, these men, they don’t know how to make themselves attractive to women, who are very picky. And good for them — women, be picky. That’s your gift, man. Demand high standards from your men. Fair enough. But all these men who are alienated, they’re lonesome, and they don’t want to do, and everyone piles abuse on them.”
During her previous sit-down with Maggie Gyllenhaal for Interview, Wilde said that incels are “disenfranchised, mostly white men, who believe they are entitled to sex from women.” She added that Peterson “is someone that legitimizes certain aspects of their movement because he’s a former professor, he’s an author, he wears a suit, so they feel like this is a real philosophy that should be taken seriously.”
Peterson went on to tell Morgan that he wasn’t particularly bothered by Wilde’s comments. “As far as critiques go, that was kind of low-level,” he said. “When Olivia Wilde made those comments, the first thing I did was go look at the preview for her movie, which I quite liked. I thought I would go see that movie, probably, and perhaps I will. It didn’t really bother me.”
As for having inspired Pine’s role as Frank in the much-debated film that also stars Harry Styles and Florence Pugh, Peterson quipped, “He’s a very good-looking man, and so that seems all right.”