The “Don’t Worry Darling” Controversy


Don’t Worry Darling, Olivia Wilde’s third film directed, was released on September 23 in theaters. Starring Florence Pugh and Harry Styles, the psychological thriller film fell short of expectations only scoring a 39% on Rotten Tomatoes. However, the behind-the-scenes controversies, from rumored feuds, on-set romances, and casting issues, have garnered much negative media attention.

Gossip sites and Tiktok accounts started speculating that Pugh did not enjoy working on set. On the day of the trailer release, Pugh did not put it on her Instagram story, she instead promoted a Christopher Nolan film, Oppenheimer, she will appear in that will be released in 2023. There was a rumored feud between Wilde and Pugh as they each had differing views on the film. However, Pugh hasn’t commented on the reports of the dispute between her and Wilde.

Sources also said that Pugh was upset that Wilde kept disappearing with Styles on the set when the two started a romantic relationship. Shortly after the cast of Don’t Worry Darling was formed, the world learned that Wilde and Jason Sudeikis had called it quits, ending their seven-year engagement. A source that “was close to the couple” stated that both have transitioned into an excellent co-parenting routine. The alleged explanation that followed the nature of the division, however, paints a slightly different picture, at least in the eyes of the public. Wilde has spoken out about the relationship ending in which the actress and director refuted “false narratives and drama”.

The drama surrounding Don’t Worry Darling escalated further when Wilde appeared on the cover of Variety to talk about the film and explained her decision to remove Shia LeBeouf from the cast. Wilde expressed that LeBeouf’s “process” required “combative energy” and didn’t match up with her production, which went against the initial claims of LeBeouf leaving due to scheduling conflicts. However, LeBeouf later reached and denied Wilde’s statements, claiming he wasn’t fired but he quit due to “lack of rehearsal time”. He also provided proof, which included screenshots of text messages involving the exchange between him and Wilde on that day.

We live in a time now where all sorts of behavior that was once not considered outrageous is now outrageous. And yet, the mentality of “reporting people” can extend to less serious and sometimes even insignificant things. The Don’t Worry Darling controversy has proven itself, infamously, an example of this.