Remember when Shia LaBeouf played Lois Stevens on Disney’s hit show Even Stevens? Of course you do. You’re a millennial and that was one of your favorite shows. Even if you didn’t watch it, you were well aware of the going-ons of Lois, Ren, and that chubby little fat kid next door, Beans, because your brother, sister, or buddy at school talked about it.
Man, that seems like years ago at this point. Especially with what’s happening with LaBeouf recently. Lois Stevens’s short film entitled Howard Cantour.com blatantly plagiarized a graphic novel by an author name Daniel Clowes. The film was posted online in late 2013, but immediately taken down. LaBeouf, who directed and “wrote” the film starring Jim Gaffigan, could face legal action for using Clowes’ writing word for word.
I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty miffed by all of this. It sucks that LaBeouf is: a) lazy enough to steal another artist’s work for his own benefit and b) is having an Amanda Bynes-worthy public mental breakdown as a result of being caught with his hand in the cookie jar.
The other day at the premiere for his new movie Nymphomaniac in Berlin, LaBeouf wore a paper bag over his head that said, “I AM NOT FAMOUS ANYMORE” in black letters. He cut out eyeholes so he could see his way to the door, apparently.
As if that wasn’t weird enough, I read in today’s The Hollywood Reporter that LaBeouf has now opened an art installation in Los Angeles called #IAmSorry, taking the name of the hashtag he used repeatedly on Twitter after he got caught plagiarizing.
When visitors enter the installation, “a woman seated behind a table invites visitors to choose one object from a selection of ‘implements’… several of the objects correspond to major films associated with LaBeouf’s career, including a whip (Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull) and several Transformers toys. A bowl of Hershey’s Kisses, a pair of pliers, a bottle of Brut cologne, a bottle of Jack Daniels and a bowl of folded up notes — each bearing Twitter comments about LaBeouf, according to the proposal — were also available for choosing… The visitor is then led past a curtain into a tiny room. Inside, LaBeouf sits at a small wooden table, the now-famous paper bag declaring “I am not famous anymore” placed over his head.”
That sounds bat shit crazy. We’re talking Lindsay Lohan looks normal-during-her-messed-up-days-crazy. What the hell is going on with this guy? Is it just another celebrity meltdown? Should we pity him for having to live in the public eye?
I’m a nice guy, but my answer is a resounding no. I do not pity LaBeouf. You want to know why? HE GOT TO PLAY INDIANA JONES’S SON!
You know how amazing that is? I don’t care about bad the fourth Indy movie is; LaBeouf got to pretend Harrison Ford was his father for more than two hours. I love my father dearly, but who wouldn’t want to be the spawn of Indiana Jones? How could LaBeouf mess up a career like this?
I’m angry as hell. I could have just as easily played Mutt Williams. Hell, my first name is William. I’ve watched all the Indy movies a million times. Shia got to be directed by Steven Freaking Spielberg. That’s his actual middle name. And now he’s wearing a bag on his god damn head, stealing people’s ideas. The nerve of this guy.
Millions of guys across the globe would have killed for a chance to be in an Indiana Jones movie, play Megan Fox’s boyfriend in a Transformers film, or get to be a kid star on a hit Disney show. Yes, I do think it’s unfair that celebrities often have very public private lives. I hate the paparazzi as much as the next guy.
But what I hate more than anything is blind arrogance and the inability to be humble. I understand that a lot of rich and famous people have worked their asses off to get where they are, but I will not accept an actor with access to so much creative content, capital, and talent to steal someone else’s idea and not give them proper credit.
Above all, I will not accept someone who got to play Indy junior fucking up what was supposed to be a long, prosperous career. You don’t get to do that, Lois Stevens.
My suggestion? Stop being a weirdo and face the criticism in a concrete way. Hold a Q&A. Tell people you were wrong. Say you want to get better. Stop hiding behind a paper bag and storming off.