The actor starred alongside Duff in the family comedy Cheaper by the Dozen, playing members of Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt’s family. Duff played their daughter while Kutcher played the boyfriend of her older sister.
Kutcher made the comment about Duff in 2003 on his MTV show Punk’d, which saw the actor play pranks on famous Hollywood stars.
Duff, 35, was 15 when she appeared on the series, and Kutcher, who was 25 at the time, said in a VT while introducing the star: “Hilary Duff is in Lizzie McGuire, she also has an album out. She’s going to be in a movie called Cheaper by the Dozen – and she’s one of the girls that we’re all waiting for to turn 18. Along with the Olsen twins.”
The video is being re-shared following the backlash Kutcher, 45, and his wife, Mila Kunis, are facing for sharing letters of support for Danny Masterson ahead of his rape sentencing.
The Independent has contacted Kutcher for comment.
On Thursday (7 September), Masterson was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison for the rapes of two women two decades ago. It was then revealed that Kutcher and Kunis, who starred alongside Masterson in That ’70s Show, were among 50 people who wrote letters of support for the 47-year-old actor ahead of his sentencing.
In their letters of support, which were published by Los Angeles-based court reporter Meghann Cuniff on Friday (9 September), the couple vouched for Masterson’s “exceptional character” and pleaded for Judge Charlaine Olmedo’s leniency.
Kutcher called his co-star, whom he also starred alongside in Netflix sitcom The Ranch, a “role model” and “a person that is consistently there for you when you need him”.
After their letters were made public, Kutcher and Kunis received huge criticism for their decision to write them – and the couple posted a video on Saturday (9 September) addressing the controversy.
A 2003 clip of Ashton Kutcher on 'Punk'd' has resurfaced and it shows the 25 year old Kutcher saying this about 15 year old Hilary Duff:
"She's one of the girls that we're all waiting for to turn 18."pic.twitter.com/KjrduXZhiO
— Mr. Pop (@MrPopOfficial) September 9, 2023
“We are aware of the pain that has been caused by the character letters that we wrote on behalf of Danny Masterson,” Kutcher said in the clip, which was posted to his socia media accounts.
Kunis added: “We support victims. We have done this historically through our work and will continue to do so in the future.”
Kutcher explained that Masterson’s family had contacted his former co-stars about writing the character letters to “represent the person that we knew for 25 years.”, with Kunis stating: “The letters were not written to question the legitimacy of the judicial system, or the validity of the jury’s ruling.”
Dude, Where’s My Car? actor Kutcher continued: “They were intended for the judge to read and not to undermine the testimony of the victims or re-traumatise them in any way. We would never want to do that, and we’re sorry if that has taken place.”
The couple are now facing a backlash for the “fake and “insulting” video, with many questioning the wording of their apology. Shortly after the video was posted, Yellowjackets actor Christina Ricci shared an Instagram Story urging the couple to “accept” that their friend is a “predator” and “abuser”.
Rape Crisis offers support for those affected by rape and sexual abuse. You can call them on 0808 802 9999 in England and Wales, 0808 801 0302 in Scotland, and 0800 0246 991 in Northern Ireland, or visit their website at www.rapecrisis.org.uk.
If you are in the US, you can call Rainn on 800-656-HOPE (4673)