Early on the morning of Saturday, May 29, Armie Hammer arrived at the Grand Cayman airport to leave the island for the first time since the March 18 press conference in which a woman named Effie accused the actor of rape. The actor, who has denied any wrongdoing through his lawyer, was departing the Caymans to check into an in-patient facility for drug, alcohol, and sex issues, according to three sources.
Hammer’s arrival at the airport was first reported on social media by a witness, who said that the actor walked in with his estranged wife, Elizabeth Chambers, and their two young children. “Elizabeth and kids dropp[ed] him off and walk[ed] in as far as allowed,” wrote the person. “A lot of hugs and seemed emotional.”
A source close to Hammer confirmed that the actor reached out to Chambers in late May, asking for help and telling her that he was ready to seek treatment—and pledging to stay at the Florida facility, outside of Orlando, as long as it takes to get healthy. Hammer checked into the facility on Monday, May 31, with the support of Chambers and his family, and has been in treatment for over a week, according to two sources.
“Everyone looks at Armie thinking that he’s had some sort of privileged life—and that must mean there were no problems in his youth and everything was peachy keen,” said a close friend of the actor. “But that’s not necessarily the way things go. Just because you come from an upbringing where financial resources are plentiful doesn’t mean life isn’t without problems.”
Neither Hammer’s lawyer nor Chambers responded to Vanity Fair’s requests for comment on this story.
The close friend of Hammer’s added, “This is a clear sign that he is taking back control [of] his life and knows that this [is] a step towards his overall well being.”
This January, several women took to social media to accuse the actor of emotional abuse, manipulation, and sexual violence. The scandal ballooned as screengrabs circulated that seemed to show the actor describing sexual fantasies involving rape and cannibalism. In the aftermath of the allegations, Hammer stepped away from two high-profile projects: a rom-com with Jennifer Lopez and a Paramount+ series about the making of The Godfather. His agency, WME, also dropped him.
The only public statement the actor has made referencing the allegations came in January, when he explained why he was stepping away from the J.Lo film: “I’m not responding to these bullshit claims but in light of the vicious and spurious online attacks against me, I cannot in good conscience now leave my children for 4 months to shoot a film in the Dominican Republic.”
On March 18, a woman named Effie held a Zoom press conference alongside her lawyer, Gloria Allred, to accuse the actor of “violently raping” her in an alleged assault she says took place in 2017 and lasted over four hours. “He repeatedly slammed my head against a wall, bruising my face,” Effie said through tears. “He also committed other acts of violence against me to which I did not consent. For example, he beat my feet with a crop so they would hurt with every step I took for the next week. During those four hours I tried to get away, but he wouldn’t let me. I thought that he was going to kill me.”
Allred declined to disclose her client’s last name. Minutes after the press conference ended, Hammer’s lawyer, Andrew Brettler, sent out a strongly worded response to the allegations that included Effie’s last name as well as a screenshot purportedly showing messages Effie had sent to Hammer.
“Effie’s…own correspondence with Mr. Hammer undermines and refutes her outrageous allegations,” Brettler said. “As recently as July 18, 2020, [she] sent graphic texts to Mr. Hammer telling him what she wanted him to do to her. Mr. Hammer responded making it clear that he did not want to maintain that type of relationship with her. The screenshot…is just one of hundreds [she] sent to Mr. Hammer.”
Allred called on Hammer to work with authorities on any potential investigations rather than let his lawyers speak for him.
“I feel immense guilt for not speaking out sooner because I feel like I may have been able to help others not become victims,” said Effie. “I want other survivors of sexual assault around the
world to feel empowered and know that they are heard, believed, understood, supported, and loved.”
Afterward, the Los Angeles Police Department confirmed that it was investigating Hammer. On Tuesday, LAPD officer Norma Eisenman told Vanity Fair that detectives are not commenting on the case.
In March, Vanity Fair published a detailed story on the Hammer family’s fraught legacy. In response to requests for subsequent comment, Hammer’s mother, Dru, sent the following email:
It’s Dru Hammer and I want you to know I forgive you for writing such a scathing article on my family. I don’t understand the position of destroying families in the press.
I know it’s your job, but it is very upsetting that you are writing yet another article about Armie and our family and I know it’s not to vindicate our family by all the calls you are making to former alleged mistresses, their former husbands, etc…
It doesn’t seem you want to find the good that God has done in our family. Michael, Misty and I are all very good friends and share our wonderful sons and grandchildren. We love and protect each other. So it is very hurtful the negative way you portrayed my former husband, being a “ne’er do well” when he is a Columbia MBA graduate and has invested the foundation very wisely so he can make a bigger difference in this world.
Not to mention the way you printed “alleged” false accusations against my son.
Every family has “something,” but what I know is these Jewish Hammer men you tore apart in your article have all come to know Jesus as their Messiah. I believe that is why I was placed in that family.
I am asking for mercy and Grace, as Jesus gives all of us and asking you to please stop degrading my family.
Thank you and may God bless your life. Dru
Multiple people speaking to Vanity Fair over the past four months have alluded to unresolved trauma in Armie Hammer’s own past, as well as ongoing substance abuse.
Via Allred, Effie released the following statement after this story originally published: “While I am glad that Armie is finally getting the help I begged him to get for so long, this does not take away all of the immense pain and suffering he has caused me.”
“He’s like a tank or something,” says someone who knows him well. “He’s six feet five so he can literally drink a bottle of vodka and not feel it. His tolerance is crazy high for everything—I mean, he can eat five Big Macs and not feel sick. He drinks a lot and he smokes weed…I mean, there’s no drug he won’t do.”
A woman who dated the actor last summer recalls him taking half a tab of acid to play golf, and then, the same day, after “about eight beers and four martinis,” driving 17 hours cross-country after getting into a fight with her. Another person who knows Hammer from Lone Ranger recalls the actor kept a stockpile of joints in his trailer; allegedly asked an assistant to procure mushrooms; and soaked pain medication with alcohol in his trailer. After taking drugs during production of the Disney movie, this crew member recalls Hammer hopping into “his souped-up Mercedes” to drive around New Mexico. “He liked to get hammered on whatever drug is around him and go driving incredibly fast throughout the city—like 140 miles an hour down residential streets, which is terrifying.”
“If he’s too high to move, that’s about the only time he won’t move,” says the former coworker. “He has this machismo thing. He would drink straight bourbon, shoot guns, get on a dirt bike with no helmet and tear ass through the desert. Maybe it was some sort of adrenaline thing.”
Says the ex-girlfriend, “He’s addicted to drugs because he has so much trauma that he cannot deal with stillness, face himself, or sit alone with his shit.”
“Everything he’s doing he has essentially said out loud in a tweet or an interview. He’s not that secretive,” she says, pointing to interviews in which Hammer talks about guns, drugs, and rough sex. “He’s been about to explode for so long, but everyone laughs it off.”
If you need emotional support or are in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
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