This week, Euphoria star Lukas Gage went public with an awkward Zoom audition, when a director left himself unmuted while criticising the young actor's "tiny apartment".
Gage handled the incident maturely by pushing on with his audition. Now, the mystery director has come forward to apologise.
English director Tristram Shapeero has taken responsibility for the "unacceptable" incident and penned an apology to Gage, which was shared on Deadline.
"Despite what is probably wise advice: to say the least possible and let this pass, I have decided to come forward, take responsibility, make the apology Mr Gage deserves," Shapeero, 54, writes.
"I offer Mr Gage a sincere and unvarnished apology for my offensive words, my unprofessional behaviour during the audition and for not giving him the focus and attention he deserved. My job is to evaluate performers against the part I am trying to cast. Lukas deserved better."
He gives background to the incident, which he says took place in August, and labels his words "unacceptable and insensitive".
Director called out for insulting home when he thought he was on mute
In the clip, shared by Gage on Twitter and Instagram on November 21, Shapeero can be heard saying, "These poor people live in these tiny apartments. Like, I'm looking at his background, and he's got his TV and you know ..."
Gage winces and interrupts, saying: "Yeah, unmuted ... I know, it's a [small] apartment. That's why give me this job, so I can get a better one!"
The director then replied to say he was "mortified".
"Listen, I am living in a four-by-four box, it's fine, just give me the job and we'll be fine," Gage said before the 29-second clip ended.
Shapeero concludes his written apology by saying: "While I can’t put the proverbial toothpaste back in the tube, I move forward from this incident a more empathetic man; a more focused director and I promise, an even better partner to actors from the audition process to the final cut."
Who is Tristram Shapeero?
In his apology, Shapeero explains that he is "a 20-year veteran television director, half in the UK, and the second half in the US". He is from Bath in Somerset, England.
He acknowledges that he is far from a household name, saying: "You probably don’t know who I am, but you’re likely familiar with my story."
Even if you didn't know who Shapeero was until this week, you will certainly be familiar with his work.
Predominantly comedy-focused, the director has worked on a number of major series. He was a regular director on 2000s UK comedies Pulling, Green Wing and Peep Show, and worked on individual episodes of I'm Alan Partridge and Absolutely Fabulous.
Since making the transition across the Atlantic, he has worked on major comedies including Community, Fresh Off the Boat, Veep, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.
According to IMDb, his most recent projects include Never Have I Ever, Superstore and Four Weddings and a Funeral. He is currently in pre-production for a TV film called Pivoting, which stars Ginnifer Goodwin and little-known co-stars Eliza Coupe, Tommy Dewey and JT Neal.
It is not clear which project Gage was auditioning for in August.
Since 2002, Shapeero has been nominated for a total of eight Baftas, for his work on Gimme Gimme Gimme, Brass Eye, Green Wing, Peep Show, Pulling and Bremner, Bird and Fortune.