Custody battles are hard enough when you’re not in the public eye and dating one of the most popular pop stars on the planet. So, when actress Olivia Wilde was served custody papers on stage while speaking to a giant room of people, you can imagine she had some feelings about it.
In April 2022, Wilde was on stage at CinemaCon, promoting her new film, Don’t Worry, Darling — starring Florence Pugh and Wilde’s boyfriend, Harry Styles, when she was quickly taken out of the moment by a person waiting at the bottom of the stage, holding a manila envelope labeled “Personal and Confidential.” After the man scooted the envelope closer to Wilde, she picked it up, took a peek inside, and quickly closed the envelope.
Like a professional, she didn’t miss a beat and continued to promote her work, saying that Don’t Worry Darling is “a love letter to movies that push the boundaries of our imagination.” It didn’t take long for the public to discover that inside that mysterious envelope held custody papers from her ex, Jason Sudeikis of Ted Lasso fame.
Wilde and Sudeikis first started dating in 2011 and got engaged two years later. The couple parted ways in November 2020. She and the Ted Lasso star share two children, Otis, 8, and Daisy Josephine, 5. Since then, the former couple has been hammering out custody issues, though a judge denied Sudeikis' attempt to move the case to New York — which is what Wilde was publicly served for.
The infamous moment happened months ago, and Wilde is finally ready to talk about it.
When speaking with Variety, the actress and director said it was an “appalling” and “upsetting” incident.
She also brought up her concerns over the quality of security at CinemaCon, questioning how someone was able to maneuver their way to the stage without a lot of planning to get to that moment.
"There was a huge breach in security, which is really scary. The hurdles that you had to jump through to get into that room with several badges, plus special COVID tests that had to be taken days in advance, which gave you wristbands that were necessary to gain access to the event — this was something that required forethought," Wilde suspected.
According to Sudeikis, he did not have anything to do with the presentation of the papers. In court papers, Sudeikis said he specified that he did not want Wilde to be served while she was around the children. He "deeply" regretted that it happened in such a public forum. "Olivia's talk was an important event for Olivia, both professionally and personally, and I am very, very sorry that the incident marred her special moment," he added.
Sounds like Wilde isn’t buying it and insinuated to Variety that this may be par for the course when it comes to Sudeikis. She continued, “To try to sabotage that was really vicious. But I had a job to do; I'm not easily distracted," she added. "But, you know, sadly, it was not something that was entirely surprising to me. I mean, there's a reason I left that relationship.”
At the end of the day, though the couple do not seem to be on the best terms, both want what is best for the kids. Wilde noted that she was not hurt by the incident personally, but more for her children.
“The only people who suffered were my kids, because they'll have to see that, and they shouldn't ever have to know that happened. For me, it was appalling, but the victims were an 8 and 5 year old, and that's really sad," she told the outlet. "I chose to become an actress; I willingly walked into the spotlight. But it's not something my children have asked for. And when my kids are dragged into it, it's deeply painful.”