Jesse Plemons Says Sam Elliott's 'Power of the Dog' Jabs 'Made Me Laugh': 'Not Everyone Has to Like It'

"People can have their own opinions about something," Jesse Plemons told THR as he laughed off Sam Elliott's recent criticism of his Oscar-nominated film The Power of the Dog

Jesse Plemons and Sam Elliott
Photo: Charley Gallay/Getty; Greg Doherty/Getty

Jesse Plemons is laughing off the haters.

The Academy Award nominee, 33, shared his candid reaction to Sam Elliott's recent criticism of The Power of the Dog as he spoke to The Hollywood Reporter at the red carpet premiere of his new film, Windfall, on Saturday.

"I don't know why I reacted this way, but — I'm not going to say it made me happy, but it made me laugh. I don't know," Plemons mused. "People can have their own opinions about something. I know there are different layers to that ... but not everyone has to like it."

He and fiancée Kirsten Dunst recently received their first Oscar nominations for their performances in the Jane Campion-written and directed western, both earning nods in the Best Supporting Actor/Actress categories.

Elliott, 77, previously said the film "rubbed [him] the wrong way" as he appeared last month on the WTF with Marc Maron podcast, likening the film's cowboy characters to Chippendales and criticizing Campion's depiction of the American West, as she's from New Zealand.

Jesse Plemons and Kirsten Dunst in The Power of the Dog (2021). KIRSTY GRIFFIN/NETFLIX

"They're all running around in chaps and no shirts. There's all these allusions to homosexuality throughout the f—ing movie," Elliott vented, to which host Marc Maron remarked: "Yeah, I think that's what the movie's about."

Elliott added of Campion, 67: "Well, what the f— does this woman — she's a brilliant director, by the way, I love her work, previous work — but what the f— does this woman from down there, New Zealand, know about the American West?"

"And why in the f— does she shoot this movie in New Zealand and call it Montana and say, 'This is the way it was?'" he asked.

Courtesy Of Netflix

Star Benedict Cumberbatch, who received a Best Actor Oscar nomination for the film, also responded to Elliott's comments earlier this month during a BAFTA Film Sessions event. "I'm trying very hard not to say anything about a very odd reaction that happened the other day on a radio podcast over here," he said.

"Without meaning to stir over the ashes of that ... someone really took offense to — I haven't heard it so it's unfair for me to comment in detail on it — to the West being portrayed in this way," Cumberbatch noted.

RELATED VIDEO: Kodi Smit-McPhee Admits to Sharing Some Laughs with Benedict Cumberbatch on Power of the Dog Set

"Beyond that reaction, that sort of denial that anybody could have any other than a heteronormative existence because of what they do for a living or where they're born, there's also a massive intolerance within the world at large towards homosexuality still and toward an acceptance of the other and any kind of difference ... it's not a history lesson," he added.

Cumberbatch, 45, stars in The Power of Dog as a grizzly cattle rancher who unexpectedly falls for the young son (Kodi Smit-McPhee) of a widow (Dunst) who recently moved to his ranch. The character grapples with his sexuality in an era and region that emphasizes binary gender roles and expectations.

The Power of the Dog is now streaming on Netflix.

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