“This is a ridiculous story — a complete fabrication and the result of an odd online illusion that is clearly deceiving and allows for foolish speculation,” reads a statement to Us Weekly on Tuesday, September 6. “Just to be clear, Harry Styles did not spit on Chris Pine. There is nothing but respect between these two men and any suggestion otherwise is a blatant attempt to create drama that simply does not exist.”
Don’t Worry Darling sparked several headlines on Monday, September 5, with fans obsessing over a video of Pine’s reaction to Styles, 28, sitting next to him for the screening. Some claim they saw the “Watermelon Sugar” singer spit on the 42-year-old Star Trek star, while other social media users believed Pine was looking for his sunglasses (which he inexplicably put on as the lights dimmed for the showing). Pine, who was sitting in between Olivia Wilde and Styles, laughed and looked down as he paused his applause in the now-viral clip.
That wasn’t the only video from the Princess Diaries 2 star’s trip to Italy that became a meme. Many social media users couldn’t get enough of the actor photographing Florence Pugh on the red carpet while other fans were obsessed with his apparent disinterest at the press conference, dubbing him “Disassociating Pine.”
While Pine was present for the press, Pugh opted not to talk about the film during her brief trip to Venice. While a source told Us Weekly that the actress and Wilde had several “disagreements personally and professionally” — which is “why Florence isn’t doing any press for the movie” — the director downplayed any issues between them on Monday.
“Florence is a force, and we are so grateful that she’s able to make it tonight despite being in production on Dune,” Wilde told reporters at the festival. “I know, as a director, how disruptive it is to lose an actor even for a day, so I’m very grateful to her, to [Dune director] Denis Villeneuve for helping us. And we’re really thrilled we’ll get to celebrate her work tonight. I can’t say enough how honored I am to have her as our lead. She’s amazing in the film.”
She added: “As for all the endless tabloid gossip and all the noise out there, the internet feeds itself. I don’t feel the need to contribute; I think it’s sufficiently well-nourished.”
Wilde, who has been romantically linked to Styles since January 2021, previously denied pay disparity rumors between the singer and Pugh. She also claimed she fired Shia LaBeouf from production to protect the set while the former Disney star alleged he quit over rehearsal time.
Don’t Worry Darling hits theaters until Friday, September 23.