Domhnall Gleeson would “feel bad” if the Peter Rabbit movie caused offense to anyone.
The Irish actor plays Thomas McGregor in the animated film, and in one scene, he is pelted with blackberries by Peter and his furry friends even though they know he’s allergic.
Accordingly, the sequence has been criticised by several food allergy groups, with Sony Pictures bosses issuing a formal apology, and Domhnall has now admitted that he empathizes with concerned parents.
“It’s not really an argument I want any part of,” he told Stuff.co.nz. “If you were a parent of a kid (with allergies) I totally get that you would say, ‘I brought them to see what I thought was a family film, this thing has happened and it’s going to make them feel self-conscious’. I would feel bad if it had that effect, which it clearly did on some people.”
However, the 34-year-old wondered whether this particular scene, which resulted in his character injecting himself with an EpiPen, was any worse than any of the other incidents in the movie.
“A lot of stuff happens to my character in that film. Getting electrocuted (as Mr. McGregor does in another scene) is also bad for you,” he considered.
Prior to Peter Rabbit, the 34-year-old was seen playing the villainous General Hux in Star Wars: The Last Jedi alongside British actress Daisy Ridley, who also voiced Cottontail in the Beatrix Potter adaptation.
And having played “the victim” in many roles before, Domhnall recently explained that he enjoyed having the chance to play a bad guy.
“My fascination with Hux was creating one of those characters a child would hate,” he told Empire magazine. “I definitely wanted a kid watching it to say, ‘I want that guy to get hurt!’ There’s a real joy to playing that out.”