The notoriously cantankerous movie reviewer Armond White, who reportedly heckled 12 Years a Slave director at last week's awards ceremony of the New York Film Critics Circle, has been expelled from that group.
During McQueen's acceptance speech for best director, White was reported to have yelled profanities like "f— you" and "kiss my ass" at the director whose movie White had panned back in October. Though White denied the allegations to publications like The Hollywood Reporter and Indiewire, this was far from the first time he stirred up trouble at the dinner. When he emceed the event in 2011, he took the opportunity to rag on films he didn't like.
In Entertainment Weekly, critic Owen Gleiberman explained his decision to vote to expel White. Gleiberman wrote:
He believes he’s justified because he thinks he’s the only truth-teller in the room. But that suggests that he’s a critic who’s now getting high on hate, and bringing that impulse out into the open. A lot of the people in the room last Monday night could hear Armond White, but in another sense he has stopped being a critic who anyone can hear. His writing and his heckling have merged into the sound of one hand clapping for itself.
In denying the allegations to THR, White said he said some critical things about McQueen, "but nothing intended for others to hear and none correctly 'reported.'" White said he didn't care about the "craven 'Emergency Meeting'" called to address the incident. "I don't care what they decide," he said. "It's not a meeting I plan to attend." White is currently the editor of CityArts.