LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – A scene from the new film “The Predator” was pulled at the last minute after the revelation that one of the actors involved was a convicted sex offender.
The three-page scene featuring actors Olivia Munn and Steven Wilder Striegel was cut from the movie when it was disclosed that Striegel was a registered sex offender, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday.
Striegel served six months in jail after pleading guilty in 2010 in Connecticut to felony charges of enticing a minor by computer and risk of injury to a child, the Times reports. Munn notified Twentieth Century Fox on Aug. 15, as soon as she learned of his background.
“Our studio was not aware of Mr. Striegel’s background when he was hired,” a Fox spokesperson said in a statement. “We were not aware of his background during the casting process due to legal limitations that impede studios from running background checks on actors.”
The 47-year-old Striegel is a longtime friend of “Predator” director Shane Black, the Times reports, and has been cast in small roles in several of Black’s movies, including “The Nice Guys” and “Ironman 3.” Black was aware of Striegel’s criminal history, but did not notify the cast or crew, Munn told the Times.
“(It’s) both surprising and unsettling that Shane Black, our director, did not share this information to the cast, crew, or Fox Studios prior to, during, or after production,” Munn said.
In the scene in question, Striegel’s only one in the movie, he reportedly plays a man who hits on Munn’s character while she is jogging, the Times reports.
“I personally chose to help a friend,” Black said in a written statement. “I can understand others might disapprove, as his conviction was on a sensitive charge and not to be taken lightly.”
“The Predator,” a reboot of the popular 1987 version with Arnold Schwarzenegger, comes out Sept. 14.
“I’ve known Shane Black 14 years, well before this incident, and I think it’s worth noting that he was aware of the facts,” Striegel said in a written statement. “Shane can speak for himself, but I’m quite certain that if he felt I was a danger in any way to have around, he would not have.”