Sam Worthington has been arrested in New York, New York for allegedly punching a paparazzo during an altercation in which his girlfriend was kicked in the shin. Worthington was charged with assault and released soon after. According to the Vancouver Sun, the incident occurred on Sunday at 5:30 p.m. in Greenwich Village. TMZ reports the paparazzo was also arrested for assault, endangerment and recklessness, and is still in custody. Worthington’s new found A List status has found him joining the likes of Alec Baldwin and Sean Penn with their physical encounters with the paparazzi.
Worthington is best known for his role of Jake Sully in Avatar. Born in England and raised in Australia, Worthington is part of the elite group of Australians taking over Hollywood. His repertoire also includes big budget films such as Terminator Salvation, and Clash of the Titans.
This is not Worthington’s first brush with the law. In 2012 he was involved in a scuffle at an Atlanta bar where he was subdued with pepper spray. According to police reports released by Celebuzz, Worthington was visibly intoxicated in the moments before being refused entry at an Atlanta restaurant and bar. Security at Vortex bar and Grill report that Worthington became belligerent and profane, leading security to pepper spray and handcuff him while waiting for the police to arrive. Outside of this incident Worthington has been able to maintain a relatively low profile, that is until this past weekend.
TMZ reports that Worthington and his girlfriend where coming out of a bar when a photographer became aggressive towards the couple and in the process kicked Worthington’s girlfriend in the shin. Worthington then acted in defense and punched the photographer in the face. Unfortunately, the incident landed him in jail causing him to join the likes of Alec Baldwin and Sean Penn.
Worthington’s arrest comes on the heels of Alec Baldwin’s penned resignation from public life as published by Vulture. In his resignation he states how his altercation with a photographer in November of 2013 changed his public persona. Baldwin allegedly chased down a paparazzo and called him a homophobic slur after the photographer almost injured his baby daughter with a camera lens. Baldwin denies using a homophobic term, but does admit to calling the photographer a slew of inappropriate words. The rumor of his homophobic language took off given his reputation to get physically and verbally aggressive with the paparazzi. Soon Baldwin became known as the most homophobic person in Hollywood.
Perhaps the most well-known anti-paparazzi celebrity is Sean Penn. His most famous encounter being in the late 1980’s during his marriage to Madonna, in which Penn served a month in jail for kicking a paparazzo. In 2010 Penn was also charged with misdemeanor battery and vandalism following another incident in which he kicked a photographer, for this he faced up to 18 months in jail. The case was settled with Penn having to serve community service, 36 months of probation and pay the paparazzo an undisclosed amount.
Are these the perils of the celebrity life? Worthington, Baldwin, and Penn have all had to physically face the paparazzi in defense of their families. Alec is saying goodbye to his public life; he will no longer be a celebrity. Sean Penn has also distanced himself; he is an extremely private person who only shares information regarding his career and charitable organizations. As to how Worthington will handle his new celebrity status is still in question. What is for certain is that he will no longer welcome the paparazzi.
By: Dony Lugo