There’s been an outpouring of tributes and heartfelt reactions to the tragic death of Kobe Bryant and eight others in a helicopter crash on Sunday. One celebrity, reaction, has drawn a ton of criticism.
Evan Rachel Wood, best known for her role in “Westwood,” referred to Bryant as a “rapist” in a tweet shortly after the news of his passing.
“What has happened is tragic. I am heartbroken for Kobe’s family. He was a sports hero. He was also a rapist. And all of these truths can exist simultaneously,” she wrote in a since-deleted tweet.
The backlash was intense when the tweet was still public, and Disney Channel star Kyla Pratt got in on it.
Evan. We met as kids & I grew up in the same industry has you and have admired your work from afar these past few years. On camera and off. But this tweet? How fucking dare you?
— Kyla Pratt (@KylaPratt) January 27, 2020
“Evan. We met as kids & I grew up in the same industry has you and have admired your work from afar these past few years. On camera and off. But this tweet? How fucking dare you?” she wrote to Wood.
Pratt sent another tweet about the tragedy, writing, “Praying for and sending love to the families affected by today’s tragedy. No matter what, people have lost their fathers, mothers, daughter, sons, wives, &etc. Let’s show respect during this time, while their families grieve on a whole other level.”
Among those who shared far less controversial tributes to Bryant were fellow basketball star Michael Jordan.
“I am in shock over the tragic news of Kobe’s and Gianna’s passing. Words can’t describe the pain I’m feeling. I loved Kobe – he was like a little brother to me. We used to talk often, and I will miss those conversations very much.
“He was a fierce competitor, one of the greats of the game and a creative force. Kobe was also an amazing dad who loved his family deeply – and took great pride in his daughter’s love for the game of basketball. Yvette joins me in sending my deepest condolences to Vanessa, the Lakers organization and basketball fans around the world.”
His fellow Lakers teammate, Shaq, shared his immediate reaction on social media:
“There’s no words to express the pain Im going through with this tragedy of loosing my neice Gigi & my brother @kobebryant I love u and u will be missed. My condolences goes out to the Bryant family and the families of the other passengers on board. IM SICK RIGHT NOW
“Kobe was so much more than an athlete, he was a family man. That was what we had most in common. I would hug his children like they were my own and he would embrace my kids like they were his. His baby girl Gigi was born on the same day as my youngest daughter Me’Arah.”