NBC’s action Wednesday to fire “Today” host Matt Lauer over allegations of sexual harassment gave a new perspective to some of his more intrusive comments to various female guests he had interviewed over the years.
A 2012 clip of an interview actress Anne Hathaway is one episode from the past that has drawn renewed scrutiny.
Hathaway had come on “Today” to promote her film “Les Miserables.” A few days before she was interviewed, a paparazzi photo that was taken up her skirt made the rounds of the gossip publications.
Good morning. Nice to see you. Seen a lot of you lately,” Lauer said.
“Sorry about that,” Hathaway responded. “I’d be happy to stay home, but the film.”
“Let’s just get it out of the way,” he said. “You had a little wardrobe malfunction the other night. What’s the lesson learned from something like that — other than that you keep smiling, which you always do?”
If Hathaway was thrown by the question, she did not show it.
“Well, it was obviously an unfortunate incident. It kind of made me sad on two accounts,” she said. “One was that I was very sad that we live in an age when someone takes a picture of another person in a vulnerable moment and rather than delete it, and do the decent thing, sells it.
“And I’m sorry that we live in a culture that com-modifies sexuality of unwilling participants, which brings us back to ‘Les Mis,’ because that’s what my character is.”
A 2009 interview with actress Sandra Bullckck has also piqued new interest.
“The major thing that’s changed since you were here last: I have now seen you naked,” Lauer said.
“And I’m so sorry about that. Were you able to sleep afterwards?” Bullock retorted.
“It’s now my screensaver,” Lauer replied.
Lauer kept coming back to the subject.
“You’re naked for most of this movie,” he said.
“No, I’m not,” Bullock replied. “I’m not naked for most of this movie, (maybe) emotionally naked.”
But Lauer kept talking about the movie, including a scene in which Bullock appeared to be mostly naked, with nothing but an arm and a loofah, respectively, covering her.