Armie Hammer is back in my feed. What has he done now?
Ahh Armie Hammer. Star of Call Me By Your Name and The Man from UNCLE. He once had such broad cross appeal, between those who like extremely large men, people who enjoy OK action films, and those who like that a celebrity was named after a millionaire oil tycoon who got his name from the phrase “arm and hammer”.
But to go back a bit: in January 2021, an anonymous Instagram account began sharing screenshots of sexual messages allegedly exchanged between Hammer and an unnamed woman, which seemed to show the actor had a taste for sexual domination, a sexual practice called bloodplay and, er, a cannibalistic kink – which apparently involves just talking hornily about eating people and not actually doing it, no matter what the internet says. At the time, Hammer said he would not respond to “bullshit claims” and described them as “vicious and spurious online attacks against me”.
But then multiple women made sexual assault allegations, including an ex-girlfriend who accused him of raping her in 2017, a claim the LAPD was investigating last year but have not laid charges over. Hammer denied all of these allegations and said all of his sexual encounters were “completely consensual, discussed and agreed upon in advance, and mutually participatory”.
Hammer’s career seemed to be over: he was dropped by his agent and publicist, and either left or was dropped from a bunch of roles, including the next Taika Waititi film and a Jennifer Affleck nee Lopez romcom. He disappeared from Hollywood for a bit – before turning up again in the Cayman Islands.
Yes! I have seen these photos of him in the Caymans cosplaying as a normal guy. There was even a shot of him working an office job, like the rest of us chumps?
Like all the rich kids during Covid, Hammer moved to the Cayman Islands to stay with his parents, and has been living there on and off ever since. Earlier this month, a TV writer called Muna Mire shared (and later deleted) a picture of a flyer she said had been given to her friend’s parents while they were on vacation in the Cayman Islands. The flyer advertised Hammer’s services as a concierge at their hotel, including the promise of swimming with wild turtles, raffle tickets and something intriguingly named STINGRAY CITY.
Hammer’s lawyer said the flyer was a fake, and a hotel staffer later owned up to Variety, saying a group of employees at the hotel who were friends with Hammer had made the flyer and left it in rooms at the hotel, as they were “curious what kind of attention it would get.” The staff member denied Hammer worked at the hotel.
But now it turns out Hammer was working at the resort after all.
This is wild and I personally cannot wait for the Ryan Murphy adaptation. I guess the question is: why was he working at this hotel?
It’s true Hammer wasn’t working as a concierge, but TMZ published photos of Hammer selling timeshares in an office at the resort. An anonymous source at the hotel confirmed to Variety that Hammer was working there, and was “totally broke, and is trying to fill the days and earn money to support his family”. Hammer’s lawyer refused to confirm or deny he was selling timeshares, telling People magazine: “If Armie is, in fact, selling timeshares, I think it’s shitty that the media seems to be shaming him for having a ‘normal job’.”
So now Hammer is sleeping on Robert Downey Jr’s couch.
OK, so Armie Hammer is a working-class hero. But wait – what’s this about Robert Downey Jr?
Vanity Fair reported this week that so many paparazzi have now descended on Hammer’s workplace that he has had to leave the island completely for Los Angeles, where he is now staying in a house owned by Downey. VF quoted an anonymous source who said Downey was also helping out Hammer financially and had paid for him to attend rehab last year. (Representatives for Downey did not respond to VF’s request for comment, but Hammer’s ex-wife, Elizabeth Chambers, seemed to confirm it, telling reporters that she thought Downey’s involvement was “good”.)
If true, this continues the great tradition of celebrities paying forward through rehab: Mel Gibson, who has very publicly battled alcoholism, paid for Downey’s rehab stint in the 1990s, and Downey is now helping Hammer. Think Elton John and Eminem. Or Elton John and Rufus Wainwright. Or Elton John and Downey – actually, let’s all just think about Elton John for a bit because he’s an awesome guy.
Thank you for wading through this quagmire with me.
The biggest question remains unanswered though, Mikey: what is Stingray City???
July 19, 2022 at 12:15PM Sian Cain explains it to Michael Sun