“I acted inappropriately toward Ms. Burton and I sincerely apologize,” Affleck tweeted on Wednesday.
The incident on TRL was resurfaced after Affleck condemned the sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein — saying he was “saddened and angered” by claims of alleged sexual harassment and assault made against the movie mogul by some of the biggest stars in Hollywood.
After a fan suggested that Affleck should have “kept quiet,” another Twitter user wrote, “He also grabbed Hilarie Burton’s breasts on TRL once. Everyone forgot though.”
The 35-year-old actress then bluntly responded about the alleged 2003 incident, “I didn’t forget.”
“I’m so sorry that happened to you,” the fan wrote back. “It’s infuriating that people never bring up all the gross, predatory things he’s done.”
“Seriously, thank you for that. I was a kid,” Burton said.
The One Tree Hill alum then shared a clip of TRL outtakes in which she says, “He comes over and tweaks my left boob,” apparently speaking about Affleck. Later in the video, the actor is shown asking her, “How old are you — 19?”
“Girls. I’m so impressed with you brave ones,” Burton, who is expecting her second child with The Walking Dead star Jeffrey Dean Morgan, wrote in the tweet. “I had to laugh back then so I wouldn’t cry. Sending love.”
Social media users have commented on how the incident is reminiscent of another interview with Affleck conducted in 2004 by Montreal TV host Anne-Marie Losique. In the clip (which you can view below), the actor pulls Losique into sitting on his lap, proposes she take her top off, and compliments her on her “firm breasts.” The interaction was filmed while Affleck was dating Jennifer Lopez.
Following Affleck’s statement on the Weinstein accusations, actress Rose McGowan — whose $100,000 settlement involving the movie mogul was revealed by the New York Times — slammed the Argo star.
On Sunday, Weinstein, 65, was removed from his powerhouse film studio in the wake of the publication of the allegations in a New York Times report.
In the Times article, eight women — including actress Ashley Judd — spoke out against Weinstein, accusing him of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior. The Times also reported that Weinstein reached private settlements with eight women, including actress Rose McGowan.
On Tuesday, a new exposé in The New Yorker revealed — among 13 different women’s accounts of alleged sexual harassment, assault and rape — that the mogul allegedly forcibly performed oral sex on Italian actress Asia Argento two decades ago.
RELATED VIDEO: Harvey Weinstein’s Wife Georgina Chapman Is Leaving Him: ‘My Heart Breaks for All the Women Who Have Suffered’
Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie also came forward to accuse Weinstein of sexual harassment, and actresses Mira Sorvino and Rosanna Arquette also claimed that after rejecting Weinstein’s unwanted advances, they were removed from or kept from being hired for projects.
Weinstein’s wife, Marchesa designer Georgina Chapman, announced Tuesday amid the allegations that she was leaving him.
“My heart breaks for all the women who have suffered tremendous pain because of these unforgivable actions. I have chosen to leave my husband. Caring for my young children is my first priority and I ask the media for privacy at this time,” Chapman says in a statement to PEOPLE.
Ben Affleck ‘Sincerely’ Apologizes for Acting ‘Inappropriately’ Towards One Tree Hill Star Hilarie Burton on TRL – PEOPLE.com