Recent Golden Globe winner Casey Affleck's dreams of Oscar glory may be dashed, as a seven-year-old sexual harassment case against him resurfaced in recent weeks.

In 2010, actor and director Casey, 41, settled a US$4.25m lawsuit by the female producer and cinematographer of his film I'm Still Here, later suggesting that 'status' provokes people to say 'whatever they want.'

Represented by the same lawyer, producer Amanda White sought US$2m and cinematographer Magdalena Gorka sought US$2.25m after working with the actor and director in 2008, according to The Daily Mail.

READ MORE:
Sylvester Stallone clashed with Casey Affleck over Golden Globes seats

Advertisement

They ultimately settled out of court in September 2010 - for sums that were never released - and Casey was 'hurt and upset' by the allegations, which he vehemently denied and initially threatened to counter sue for.

Papers issued by White to Affleck after the project wrapped in 2010, accused the director of 'uninvited and unwanted sexual advances,' describing one time that he 'grabbed her in a hostile manner'. She claimed that he referred to women as 'cows' and allegedly asked her if it was 'about time she got pregnant.'

The complaint from Gorka that followed said he 'verbally and physically harassed her' on set. Gorka resigned from the project as a direct result of sexual harassment, the papers claim, but she rejoined the project when White was hired as a producer.

Casey Affleck has picked up a lot of awards buzz for his role in Manchester by the Sea. Photo/AP
Casey Affleck has picked up a lot of awards buzz for his role in Manchester by the Sea. Photo/AP

The paperwork states that Affleck admitted that he had 'climbed into bed with Gorka while she was sleeping' while they were on location in New York.

In her statement, she describes how he, 'had his arm around her, was caressing her back, his face was within inches of hers and his breath reeked of alcohol' and was dressed in just a T-shirt and underwear.

She explained how he had used his 'celebrity and wealth to intimidate' White, after her suit and described the importance of issuing the paperwork for the future of young women working in film.

The case is similar to one from earlier in the Oscar race, when Nate Parker's chances of awards glory came to a dramatic and public end in October following the resurfacing of rape allegations.

The writer, director and star of The Birth of a Nation had been tipped for success after the film premiered at Sundance in January 2016. However, after old articles concerning his previous rape case, and the fact the victim in the case had committed suicide several years later, were reported on, the film tanked at the box office.

Yet while the rape narrative dominated discussion of Birth of a Nation, Affleck has more or less been allowed to get away with it. A report from The Guardian quotes a member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which hands out the Golden Globes, as saying: "People really do like him, no one wants him to be an abuser or anything like it."

Affleck himself tried to put a lid on the allegations last November when, in an email exchange with The New York Times, he said that he did not feel responsibility for what happened.

He wrote: 'It was settled to the satisfaction of all. I was hurt and upset - I am sure all were - but I am over it.'

That doesn't mean that it doesn't get frequently alluded to as his momentum for a successful awards season builds with a string of awards for Manchester By The Sea.

Casey Affleck has managed to by-pass the accusations to continue raking up awards, unlike other actors. Photo/AP
Casey Affleck has managed to by-pass the accusations to continue raking up awards, unlike other actors. Photo/AP

Affleck has previously admitted to wrestling with the idea of 'celebrity', going so far as to say in an interview with Variety that he had been targeted because of his status.

'Sometimes it doesn't matter how you respond,' he said of the charges. 'I guess people think if you're well-known, it's perfectly fine to say anything you want.'

He went on to say: 'I don't know why that is. But it shouldn't be, because everybody has families and lives.'

On his standing ovation for Manchester By The Sea at Toronto and London Film Festivals, Casey admitted that he was now used to 'politely disgusted' receptions.

"I never experienced anything like that. I'm more familiar with other kinds of reactions - lukewarm to politely disgusted. When you walk in and see a movie and people applaud ... I was like, 'Wow.' I'm still holding on to that feeling."

One such reaction seemed more personal this weekend, when actress Brie Larson was observed to be 'snubbing' the actor when she presented him with the Golden Globe.

Instead of greeting the actor on Sunday night, the deadpan actress stood her distance and simply uttered 'congratulations' and handed over the trophy.

At last year's Academy Awards, the Best Actress winner went out of her way to embrace every sexual abuse survivor that was invited to join Lady Gaga on stage.

Despite the accusations becoming more prominent in recent weeks, Affleck still claimed a BAFTA nomination earlier this week, and is currently still seen as a frontrunner for the Oscar next month.