In the backdrop of one of the most politically charged ceremonies in recent memory, Casey Affleck’s Best Actor win at the 2017 Academy Awards has not going down well with many.

Affleck won the Oscar for his portrayal of an emotionally stunted man in “Manchester by the Sea,” beating Denzel Washington and his critically-acclaimed performance in “Fences.” While Affleck’s work was widely commended, many are taking to social media to protest the win over his actions off camera.

The 41-year-old actor was sued over allegations of sexual assault by two women who worked on his mockumentary “I’m Still Here” in 2010. The women — Amanda White, who was the producer on the project, and Magdalena Gorka, the film’s director of photography — made a range of allegations against the actor, including incidents where Affleck forced another crew member to flash his penis in front of White, referred to women as “cows,” and openly narrated his sexual exploits, among other things.

Actor Casey Affleck accepts Best Actor for ‘Manchester by the Sea’ onstage during the 89th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center in Hollywood, California, Feb. 26, 2017. Photo: Getty Images/Kevin Winter

White said Affleck tried to talk her into sharing a hotel room and when she refused, he grabbed her and tried to scare her into agreeing with him. Gorka, who described her time working under Affleck as “the most traumatizing of her career,” alleged that Affleck crept into her bed — in only his underwear and T-shirt — and touched her inappropriately.

Affleck threatened to countersue the women, but ended up settling with them (amounts were not disclosed) outside court in 2010. When asked to comment on the lawsuits later, Affleck reportedly said: “People say whatever they want. Sometimes it doesn’t matter how you respond… I guess people think if you’re well-known, it’s perfectly fine to say anything you want. I don’t know why that is. But it shouldn’t be, because everybody has families and lives.”

People, however, have taken these allegations seriously and compared the controversy surrounding Affleck to actor Nate Parker’ sexual assault scandal, which was almost career-ending for the latter. Many pointed out that Parker, who is a black man, was acquitted of the charges, and that Affleck settled out of court and went on to win laurels for his acting.

Here are some social media reactions to Affleck’s Oscar win this year:


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