9:11pm PT by Debbie Emery
Gary Oldman Tells Jimmy Kimmel: 'I Am an A—Hole, I Should Know Better' (Video)
After causing a firestorm of controversy this week, Gary Oldman admitted to Jimmy Kimmel, "I am an a—hole."
The confession was part of a public apology Wednesday on Jimmy Kimmel Live! for Oldman's offensive comments blasting liberal Hollywood and defending Mel Gibson and Alec Baldwin regarding their controversial remarks about Jews and gays.
"It was an article I did with Playboy, and I said some things that were poorly considered. Once I saw it in print, I saw that it was insensitive, pernicious and ill-informed," the British actor admitted to Kimmel.
"I am a public figure, I should be an example and inspiration, and I am an a—hole. I am 56. I should know better. I extend my apology and my love and best wishes to my fan base."
In a lengthy and extremely candid interview in the July/August issue of Playboy promoting Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Oldman said he believes "political correctness is crap."
"Take a f—ing joke. Get over it," he went on to say. "I don't know about Mel. He got drunk and said a few things, but we've all said those things. We're all f—ing hypocrites. The policeman who arrested him has never used the word n—— or that f—ing Jew?"
In Wednesday's humble response, Oldman said: "Words have meaning, and they carry weight. And they carry on long after you’ve said them. I don’t condone or excuse the words that I used in any context. I just basically shouldn’t have used them, but I did, and I have injured and wounded a great many people."
The Dark Knight Rises actor also thanked Kimmel for having him on the ABC late-night show and giving him the opportunity to make amends. "I appreciate you having me here and extending your hospitality and to put me in this seat once again," he told the host. "And it gives me the opportunity to say to those people that I, from my heart, I am profoundly, profoundly sorry…especially to the fans, as they have been so incredible to me and loyal. They call me Team Oldman. I feel like I let them down."
In his Playboy rant, Oldman had also singled out satirical news programs such as The Daily Show With Jon Stewart and Real Time With Bill Maher for getting away with making offensive comments about people and hiding "behind comedy and satire."
His expletive-filled interview sparked a sharp response from Jewish leaders, and Oldman wrote an an open letter to the Anti-Defamation League late on Tuesday, saying: "I am deeply remorseful that comments I recently made in the Playboy interview were offensive to many Jewish people."
During the Jimmy Kimmel Live! interview, the late night host broke the ice by saying, "I am stuck on the fact that they call you 'Team Oldman.' I am so happy that someone has to apologize on this show, and it's not me for once," he joked, adding: "I think it is important when someone apologizes to accept their apology. You are a great actor, so we can't trust anything you say!"
Oldman explained that "sometimes we are asked to be social and cultural commentators, and I am not. I landed both feet in a hornets' nest. It came over in a certain way, and for that I am deeply sorry."
Kimmel then went on to "make the most awkward transition possible" and ask, "Are you excited about Planet of the Apes?"
"They [the apes] are furious," quipped Oldman.
Watch video of the interview below.