Jonah Hill says there’s no excuse for what he said to an annoying paparazzo over the weekend.
“What I said in that moment was disgusting,” the two-time Oscar nominee told Howard Stern on the radio legend’s SiriusXM satellite radio show Tuesday morning (June 3).
Knowing Stern was going to ask about the video that broke on Monday night in which Hill yells “Suck my d—, you f—–!” at a photographer who had reportedly been baiting the “Wolf of Wall Street” actor about his outfit and family, Jonah offered no apologies for losing his cool and uttering the slur.
“This is a heartbreaking situation for me,” said Hill, who Stern described as being visibly angry when the incident was brought up. “Anger’s not the right word at all. I’m upset. Because from the day I was born, and publicly, I’ve been a gay rights activist.”
Saying there was no excuse for what he said in the 40-second clip posted by TMZ, Hill explained the photographer had been following him around all day and saying “hurtful things about my family” and “really hurtful things about me personally.”
“I played into exactly what he wanted and lost my cool,” said Hill. “In that moment, I said a disgusting word that does not at all reflect how I feel about any people.”
Hill said he grew up with gay family members and was leaving to stand up at a close friend’s gay wedding after the Stern interview, but would not use those facts as an explanation for what happened.
“I’m not at all defending my choice of words,” he said. “But I am happy to be the poster boy for thinking about what you say and how those words… even if you don’t intend them and how they mean, they’re rooted in hate and that’s bulls—.”
The comments came after the photographer, who was following Hill and two friends down a Los Angeles street, said, “I like the shorts though, bro. They’re pretty sexy” and wished the “22 Jump Street” star a good day.
Hill told Stern he wasn’t going to use the incident as an excuse to complain about harassment by the celebrity press. “I should have said either nothing or just, ‘F— you,’” he said. “Instead I used a word I don’t use in my personal life, it’s not part of my vernacular… I’m happy to take the heat for using this disgusting word. What I won’t allow… It would break my heart to think that anyone would think… that I would be against anyone for their sexuality. That’s absurd to me. So it’s been a heartbreaking morning.”
“I basically meant, ‘You f—ing a–hole,” he said.
Hill has previously taken public stances in support of gay rights, once tweeting his support of the Human Rights Campaign’s “Love Conquers Hate” effort.
— Jonah Hill (@JonahHill) November 4, 2013