Armie Hammer was in such despair in February 2021 after being accused of assault, emotional abuse and cannibalism at the height of the #MeToo movement that he almost killed himself.
“I just walked out into the ocean and swam out as far as I could and hoped that either I drowned, or was hit by a boat, or eaten by a shark,” Hammer told Air Mail in his first interview since the collapse of his career.
“Then I realized that my kids were still on shore, and that I couldn’t do that to my kids.”
Hammer denies any criminal wrongdoing — and Air Mail details how some of his accusers may not have been as truthful as originally thought — but he owns up to being a jerk.
“I’m here to own my mistakes, take accountability for the fact that I was an a–hole, that I was selfish, that I used people to make me feel better, and when I was done, moved on,” he said.
Hammer also reveals in the largely sympathetic profile by writer James Kirchick that he was allegedly molested by a youth pastor at his family’s church when he was 13. The resulting trauma may have kick-started his interest in BDSM and other sex fetishes, he said.
“What that did for me was it introduced sexuality into my life in a way that it was completely out of my control,” Hammer said. “I was powerless in the situation. I had no agency in the situation. Sexuality was introduced to me in a scary way where I had no control. My interests then went to: I want to have control in the situation, sexually.”
Hammer’s past history of alcohol abuse and BDSM and infidelity was chronicled in “House of Hammer,” a three-part series on Discovery+ delving into the Hammer family’s “sinister secrets that money and power couldn’t hide forever.”
He says now that he’s sober after a stint in rehab and at peace — despite having been dropped by his agent and cut from a number of movies he had been signed to star in after the scandal first hit.
““I’m now grateful for everything that’s happened to me, because, as it says in the ‘Twelve and Twelve’ [‘Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions,’ the guidebook of Alcoholics Anonymous], pain is the touchstone of spiritual progress,” Hammer said.
“I’m now a healthier, happier, more balanced person. I’m able to be there for my kids in a way I never was. I’m able to be there for my dad as he’s dying in a way that I would have never been able to be. I’m truly grateful for my life and my recovery and everything. I would not go back and undo everything that’s happened to me.”
Hammer married Elizabeth Chamber in 2010, and they had two children before splitting up in July 2020.
Six months later, Hammer became the subject of shocking sexual assault and cannibalism accusations after the Instagram account “House of Effie” began sharing screenshots of sickening messages purportedly penned by the star.
In March 2021, the woman behind the Instagram account — initially known only as Effie — came forward, accusing Hammer of violently raping her for four hours at a Los Angeles hotel in April 2017. Her name has since been revealed as Efrosina Angelova.
Since then, multiple other women also come out claiming to have been sexually assaulted and mistreated by the star — including one who claimed he tied her up and told her he wanted to “break my rib and barbecue and eat it.”
But Angelova’s claims are disputed in the Air Mail story. Kirchick obtained direct messages that Angelova sent to Hammer’s then-wife Chambers disclosing the affair and allegedly writing, “I was pretty much chasing him.”
Hammer said the “rape” she described was a consensual “scene” they planned together in advance.
“She planned all of the details out, all the way down to what Starbucks I would see her at, how I would follow her home, how her front door would be open and unlocked and I would come in, and we would engage in what is called a ‘consensual non-consent scene,’ CNC,” Hammer said. “Every single thing was discussed beforehand. I have never thrust this on someone unexpectedly. Never.”
Hammer estimates that, between legal fees and acting jobs he was fired from, he lost somewhere between $14 million and $16 million in 2021 alone. “My financial status is I am not only broke; I am massively in debt.”
Currently, Hammer is working as a sober companion for a fellow recovering addict just out of rehab.
“I’m going to move in with him and live with him, get him on a healthy routine, get him into a good schedule of [recovery] meetings, take him to the gym, cook healthy food for him,” he says. “It feels like my recovery has taken a turn from me being the one who needs help staying sober to me being able to help others. Twelve steps in action.”
Hammer couldn’t help but take a shot at so-called “cancel culture” in the profile.
“No one will hire me. No one will insure me. I can’t get bonded for a project — nothing,” he said. “And no one will touch me because if they hire me, then they are the people who support abusers.
“And then they’re liable to get canceled themselves because this fire that is burning itself through town — when they throw someone like me on the fire to protect themselves, what they don’t realize is happening is all they’re doing is making the fire bigger. And that fire is now out of control and it’s going to burn everyone. And they’re just continually throwing people on it as sacrifices to protect themselves.”
If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or are experiencing a mental health crisis and live in New York City, you can call 1-888-NYC-WELL for free and confidential crisis counseling. If you live outside the five boroughs, you can dial the 24/7 National Suicide Prevention hotline at 988 or go to SuicidePreventionLifeline.org.