A List of Jeremy Renner’s Most Controversial Statements

Jeremy Renner has had a rough go these past few months. His app shuttered, his ex-wife alleged that he abused her and threatened her life, and a lot of fans are speculating about his status as Hawkeye. But if you looked at Renner’s history, he’s had quite a few negative moments in the press during his time in Hollywood. He might not be the most liked guy in Hollywood, and his quotes speak for themselves.  

Jeremy Renner at the opening of Sugar Taco.
Jeremy Renner at the launch of Sugar Taco | Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

Renner called Black Widow a “slut” and didn’t back down from it

In April 2015, Renner and Chris Evans were in an interview for Avengers: Age of Ultron and were asked their thoughts on Natasha/Black Widow starting a relationship with one of their characters. Renner replied merely with, “She’s a slut.” Both he and Evans laughed hard, with Evans calling her “a complete whore.”

Afterward, Evans released an apology and said he regretted it, whereas Renner’s statement said he was sorry “that this tasteless joke about a fictional character offended anyone.” But then he followed that up on Conan O’Brien’s show and said, “I got in a lot of internet trouble… Mind you, I was talking about a fictional character and fictional behavior.”

On top of “slut,” Renner told Maxim later that year that his favorite swear word is one used derogatorily towards women. “I think all of them are equally amazing. ‘C*nt’ is pretty good.”

It’s “not [his] job” to worry about equal pay and treatment among his female co-stars

Renner caught heat, again, in October 2015 when he told Business Insider that he doesn’t think he should help with pay inequality with his female co-stars. “That’s not my job,” Renner said. “I don’t know contracts and money and all that sort of stuff.”

He followed it up by explaining what he focused on instead. “I’m a performer, and I know human behavior,” he added. “When it comes to that sort of stuff, I let other people deal with that. I do what I’m good at, that’s what I focus on.”

He commented further with Maxim, saying this wasn’t a significant issue in his mind. “I don’t really pay attention to that stuff. I only pay attention to things that are ultimately really important to me,” he said. “We all have freedom of speech, and I’m very proud of that in this country. 

He made an inappropriate comment to Jennifer Lopez — on live TV — at the Golden Globes

2015 was just not Renner’s year when it came to good press. While presenting with Jennifer Lopez at the Golden Globes, she offered to open the envelope with the winner’s name inside. “You want me to do? I have the nails,” she said. Renner responded with, “Yeah, good effort. You’ve got the globes too.” According to the LA Times, he wrote on the now-deleted site, WhoSay, that people shouldn’t take it “so serious.”

He used a slur for transgender folks

Lastly, in 2010, Renner was on the interview show In the House with Peter Bart & Peter Guber and said he’d like to play a transgender character. However, he used two different slurs for trans people in doing so, multiple times.

Hollywood controversies happen all the time, but Renner just seems to get caught up in some a lot. He hasn’t said anything in the past few years to make this list, however, with his ex-wife’s accusations have taken center stage.