In a new Esquire profile of Shia LeBeouf, the actor described his shame after the “mortifying” 2017 arrest in Savannah.
LeBeouf was arrested for obstruction, disorderly conduct and public drunkenness in July 2017 while in town filming “The Peanut Butter Falcon.” He asked a pedestrian and a Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department officer for a cigarette near Barnard Street and West St. Julian Streets. When he wasn’t given one, he became belligerent.
“He became disorderly, using profanities and vulgar language in front of the women and children present. He was told to leave the area and refused, becoming aggressive toward the officer,” according to a statement released by police at the time. “When the officer attempted to place LaBeouf under arrest, LaBeouf ran to a nearby hotel. LaBeouf was arrested in the hotel lobby, where his disorderly behavior continued.”
Looking back on the ordeal, LeBeouf explained that his costar’s words had an important impact on him. Zachary Gottsagen, a 32-year-old actor with Down syndrome, sat right down and told him how he felt.
“To hear him say that he was disappointed in me probably changed the course of my life,” LeBeouf told Esquire. That conversation was a turning point for him, he said.
“What went on in Georgia was mortifying,” LeBeouf told the magazine. “White privilege and desperation and disaster. ... It came from a place of self-centered delusion. ... It was me trying to absolve myself of guilt for getting arrested.”