Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher said they are “aware of the pain” their character letters defending convicted rapist Danny Masterson caused, stating their intent was not to re-traumatize the victims or undermine the verdict.
Kunis and Kutcher were among several actors from “That ’70s Show” who went to bat for Masterson before he was sentenced Thursday to 30 years to life in prison for sexually assaulting two women at his Hollywood Hills home two decades ago.
“We support victims, we have done this historically through our work and will continue to do so in the future,” Kunis, 40, said in an Instagram video Saturday with her husband.
In letters submitted to the court, Kunis and Kutcher described Masterson as an “outstanding older brother figure,” a “dedicated and loyal” husband, and an “excellent” role model — a stark contrast to the predator who “drugged and raped” defenseless woman that his victims labeled him as.
“Throughout our time together, Danny has proven to be an amazing friend, confidant, and, above all, an outstanding older brother figure to me,” Kunis wrote in her letter. “His caring nature and ability to offer guidance have been instrumental in my growth both personally and professionally.”
Kunis went on to say that Masterson’s role “as a husband and father to his daughter has been nothing short of extraordinary.”
In his letter, Kutcher recalled a time when Masterson came to the defense of a woman being berated by her boyfriend and described how he helped raise money for first responders who became ill after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Kutcher also addressed the accusations against Masterson, writing that he hoped his “testament to his character is taken into consideration in sentencing.”
“I do not believe he is an ongoing harm to society and having his daughter raised without a present father would be a tertiary injustice in and of itself,” the actor said.
Kutcher said Saturday that he and Kunis wrote the letters after Masterson’s family asked them to characterize “the person that we knew for 25 years so that the judge could take that into full consideration relative to the sentencing.”
“The letters were not written to question the legitimacy of the judicial system or the validity of the jury’s ruling,” Kunis said.
“They were intended for the judge to read,” Kutcher added. “And not to undermine the testimony of the victims or re-traumatize them in any way. We would never want to do that. And we’re sorry if that has taken place.”
Masterson’s wife, Bijou Phillips, as well as “That ’70s Show” stars Debra Jo Rupp and Kurtwood Smith, Masterson’s brother-in-law, actor William Baldwin, and brother/sister actors Giovanni and Marissa Ribisi also wrote character letters on his behalf.