Director From Lukas Gage's Zoom Audition Apologizes

Lukas Gage Tristam Shapeero

On Friday, Gage, who previously starred in Euphoria and American Vandal, posted a clip of his Zoom audition where an alleged Shapeero believes he's on mute as he comments on how "these poor people live in these tiny apartments".

But after posting it on Twitter on Saturday, the video went viral - it was viewed more than 9 million times and has now received almost 300,000 likes and more than 30,000 retweets.

Lukas Gage received an apology from director Tristram Shapeero, after he was caught calling the star "poor".

"I'm mortified about what happened", continued Shapeero, adding that while he can not change what happened, he will "move forward from this incident a more empathetic man".

Footage of the awkward exchange went viral after the United States actor shared the clip last week, but did not name the director. "But that's why ... give me this job and I'll get a better one".

He offers an "unvarnished apology" to Gage for his "unacceptable and insensitive remarks".

Though the director behind the remark was not recognized in Gage's tweet, celebrities and followers alike quickly put their heads collectively and started to guess that Shapeero was behind it. Shapeero has beforehand directed episodes of "By no means Have I Ever", "Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist", "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt", "Brooklyn 9-9" and "Neighborhood", amongst others.

Shapeero has since issued an apology to Gage for what he described as his "unprofessional behavior".

Writing for Deadline.com, he explained: "This Zoom audition took place in August, after four months of lockdown".

Gage, smiling, replies: "I know it's a sh***y apartment". My job is to evaluate performers against the part I am trying to cast.

"I was using the word "poor" in the sense of deserving sympathy, as opposed to any economic judgment", Shapeero wrote. My words were being spoken from a genuine place of appreciation for what the actors were having to endure, stuck in confined spaces, finding it within themselves to give a role-winning performance under these conditions, ' he continued.

Gage has yet to respond to Shapeero's apology.

The incident led to an outpouring of support in Hollywood for Gage, but the director seems to think it was all overblown. So did Superstar's Molly Shannon, who's now shooting the HBO limited series The White Lotus with Gage in Hawaii.

Gage received support from major figures in the film and TV industry, including Judd Apatow, Seth MacFarlane and Billy Eichner.

TMZ tracked down director Tristram Shapeero and asked him about the incident.

'I don't have any apology because I didn't say anything bad, ' he told one freelance journalist. "Your apt looks pretty great to me and honestly, f that dude, he doesn't deserve to work with someone like you", actress Jenna Ushkowitz said.

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