As his appointment as Berlin Film Festival jury is met with criticisms, the 'Watchmen' star backtracks on his controversial comments about same-sex marriage and sexual harassment.

AceShowbiz - Jeremy Irons has disowned his past comments on same-sex marriage and sexual harassment in his first press conference as Berlin Film festival jury chair.

The "Reversal of Fortune" star's appointment as head juror at the German film event was controversial due to bizarre remarks made in interviews - including that gay marriage could lead to fathers marrying sons, and that women were partly responsible for attacks by 1970s TV stars.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the British actor addressed his past comments at the festival's opening press conference - saying he did not want them to overshadow proceedings.

"Let me make my views entirely clear on these particular subjects once and for all," he said. "First, I support wholeheartedly the movement to address women's rights and to protect them from harassment at home and in (the) workplace."

"Second, I applaud the legislation for same-sex marriage where it has been attained. I hope that such enlightened legislation will continue to spread. Third, I supported wholeheartedly the right of women to have an abortion should they so decide."

In addition to his offensive remarks on gay rights and historic cases of sexual harassment, the "Watchmen" star told The Guardian he was anti-abortion in 2016.

The star said that while he believed women should be allowed to decide to have an abortion, he thought, "the Church is right to say (abortion) is a sin."

"Abortion harms a woman - it's a tremendous mental attack, and physical, sometimes. But we seem to get that muddled."

As a result of his past views, editors at three Berlin newspapers condemned his appointment when it was announced last month, January 2020.

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