Jonah Hill is known for starring in comedies such as Superbad, 21 Jump Street, and This Is The End. Sex humour and being the butt of a joke are well-trodden territory for the actor after all the roles he's played. But apparently, the sense of humour he has cultivated on camera doesn't quite translate to real-life situations.
On Friday, Hill was in France with Miles Teller to promote their movie War Dogs. The co-stars stopped by comedy news show Le Grand Journal to chat live with a panel that included comedian (and "weather girl") Ornella Fleury. Fleury joked, in French, that it was a certain perverted scene in This Is The End that first made her fall for Hill. "It's when I saw you get sodomised by a demon in This Is The End that I told myself, that is the man of my dreams," she said, according to subtitles and original reports. Hill replied, "I heard you get sodomised quite often."
Fleury continued with a joke about her sexual fantasy involving Hill: "We would meet up in a hotel room at night. We would chat, you’d make me laugh... and then, all of a sudden, you’d bring your friends Leo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt. And then you would leave." Hill wasn't a fan of this barb, either. "I'm glad I came on this show to get ridiculed by your local weather girl," he responded.
On Sunday, French news outlet BFMTV reported that Hill had cancelled the rest of his appearances in France. And on Monday, Fleury issued an apology for getting too personal with the actor. "Jonah, the problem is that for 10 years I have lived with you through your films," she said, per The Local's translation. "I really had the impression that I knew you, so last Friday I thought I was just messing around with a friend, but the reality is that we are not friends."
So, did Hill overreact? Was his comeback inappropriate? Was Fleury's joke a little harsh? All of the above, in my opinion. Fleury's joke probably embarrassed Hill a little. But the reality is that her job as a comedian is to say funny things. And his job as an actor on a press tour entails being able to roll with the punches, which includes resisting the urge to take cheap shots at the people who make jokes he doesn't like. Plus, he's made a career out of crude sex jokes — can he really not handle hearing a woman make one at his expense? The biggest problem I see is Hill's gut reaction to lash back at Fleury with a tasteless, sexist remark about her being sodomised. It was unnecessary and demeaning, and the fact that she's the one out there apologising — while he cancelled interviews in order to lick his wounds in private — is frustrating, to say the least. Something tells me we won't be hearing "sorry" from Hill anytime soon.