‘Needs help’: Inside star’s ‘God complex’
Hollywood star Armie Hammer loves to barbecue, friends say. His Instagram is full of photos of raw meat, grilled ribs, pigs' heads and big knives.
For one photo of a grill, he posted: "Have you ever seen anything sexier?"
But his hobby made shocking headlines this week when a recent ex-girlfriend revealed how the 34-year-old Call Me By Your Name actor fantasised about which of her body parts he'd like to roast and devour.
The claims by Vucekovich, known for creating the "on-demand glam" app Flashd, came days after the revelation of Hammer's messages about rape fantasies and cannibalism.
In one DM, shared by the anonymous Instagram account @HouseofEffie, Hammer allegedly told a partner he wished to "cut off one of your toes and keep it with me in my pocket so I always had a piece of you in my possession."
In another, he allegedly described himself as "100 per cent a cannibal."
Hammer's representative did not answer a request for comment.
This has come as a shock not just to his friends, but his ex-wife Elizabeth Chambers, with whom he is in the midst of an already difficult divorce.
They are both currently on the Cayman Islands, where Chambers has been living with their two young children since they split over the summer.
A family friend told The Post that Chambers, who filed for divorce in July, is "really in shock" and has "not processed any of this yet," adding: "They went out to the Cayman Islands at the beginning of the pandemic in March as a family and Armie left in late June to go back to California.
"She's basically been a single mum since then, Armie didn't see the kids for five months. The kids are her number one priority, so on top of all the emotional stuff she has two kids to take to school and make sure they're not affected."
The friend added: "Elizabeth was aware of some infidelity, but she wanted to make the marriage work and thought that he did too."
Several sources said that Hammer had been madly in love with Chambers. But a major Hollywood publicist told The Post how, once Call Me By Your Name boosted his fame, "women were texting him, chasing him - and when he would drink, that's when he'd run around. Everyone thought he and Elizabeth decided to have an open marriage."
A representative for Chambers had no comment.
"[These messages] are very shocking for her," Chambers' friend added. "He never did any of the weird s- -t with her."
Another source who knows both Hammer and Chambers said: "My mind is blown. He always appeared so totally normal, he loves grilling, I mean - he was so excited about buying a new smoker and he would have friends over for barbecues and cocktails.
"None of this seems like the Armie that I know. He needs help. Something is terribly wrong, and I just wonder if it's drugs."
This week, the Daily Mail published video clips of Hammer declaring "s - t's getting weird" after sniffing a white substance from someone's hand and swigging from his beer can while behind the wheel of a car.
On Friday, the Daily Mail posted a video from what is alleged to be Hammer's secret Instagram account. The post said that he had "THC and benzos" in his system but that the hallucinogenic drug DMT had not showed up in a drug test; he also showed what appeared to be a court mandate ordering him to undergo drug testing as a condition of seeing his children. In the background, a woman wearing lingerie while on her hands and knees in a bed was visible.
"Divorce is so fun. Not as fun as drugs. But what is," the post read.
A movie insider who worked with Hammer on the set of the 2018 film On the Basis of Sex told The Post that "He would have a water bottle of vodka in the green room before going on TV [interviews] but other than that he was a gentleman."
A source who has worked with Hammer told The Post that Hammer does "not have a drug habit" but that he will drink heavily for weeks at a time. Asked about the messages, the source said: "Of course Armie is not a cannibal … although BDSM might be weird, it's not illegal."
Hammer, a 2018 Golden Globes nominee for Best Supporting Actor, has admitted he came close to "completely losing" his mind while with his family in the Caribbean, which went from a tropical paradise to "draconian lockdown" during the pandemic.
Hammer told British GQ in September that he was at his dad's apartment with Chambers, their kids and his stepmother.
"We'd be looking out at the ocean, but couldn't go in the ocean; looking at the beach, but couldn't go on the beach. We couldn't leave the apartment, couldn't go in the pool, couldn't do anything," the actor said.
"It was a very complicated, intense situation, with big personalities all locked in a little tiny place … I'd never dealt with anything like that before in my life, so I didn't have the tools," Hammer said.
He added: "I think, to be quite frank, I came very close to completely losing my mind."
While in quarantine, Hammer and Chambers decided to split after 10 years of marriage. Her divorce filing cited irreconcilable differences, and the journalist and entrepreneur has asked the court to grant her primary physical custody of the children.
Back in LA, Hammer embarked on a string of romances. He was seen canoodling with 22-year-old model Paige Lorenze and bakery owner Jessica Ciencin Henriquez, the ex-wife of actor Josh Lucas. But in October, just a month after she was first spotted with Hammer, Henriquez posted a telling meme to Instagram: "How It Started" showed what appeared to be a paparazzi photo of her and Hammer on a lunch date; "How It's Going" revealed that she had blocked the actor from her account.
Henriquez spoke out this week, saying she believes the shocking cannibal/rape messages "are real," and later wrote: "'It takes an army to hide a predator." She also posted a quote from Vucekovich's Page Six interview: "He blows up [women's] lives like that and walks away."
A source close to Henriquez said she did not want to speak out any more, fearing for her safety and that of her children.
However, after Lorenze took to Twitter this week to post: "Anyone got a good therapist?" Henriquez replied: "Yeah girl, I'll send you her number."
Meanwhile, Vucekovich, who dated Hammer from June to October, couldn't confirm whether the @HouseOfEffie screenshots were legitimate, but she said they were no surprise.
"He likes the idea of skin in his teeth," she claimed. "He says, 'I want to take a bite out of you.' If I had a little cut on my hand, he'd like suck it or lick it. That's about as weird as we got."
Hammer comes from extreme privilege. In 2009, he appeared in a Vanity Fair spread of "Fortune's Children," which features 38 heirs and heiresses - including Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner - heralded as "the next generation of some of the world's greatest fortunes."
His great-grandfather, Dr. Armand Hammer, was an oil tycoon who ran Occidental Petroleum. When he died in 1990, he was reportedly worth around $200 million.
The actor, the son of businessman Michael Armand Hammer and his wife Dru Ann Mobley, grew up in Dallas and then the Cayman Islands. "My dad saw the movie 'The Firm' and he thought it looked like paradise," he has said of his father's decision to move there.
Telling VF that he was taunted as a child with the nickname "Baking Soda Boy," Hammer has explained that his name has nothing to do with the Arm and Hammer brand. His great-grandfather was actually named for the arm-and-hammer logo of the Socialist Labor Party. Years later, the oil tycoon used the insignia for the flag on his yacht.
'Of course Armie is not a cannibal … although BDSM might be weird, it's not illegal'
Before he began acting, Hammer told VF, "I tried college at UCLA. I gave it a fighting effort and I just couldn't do it." He reportedly got kicked out of high school for starting a fire and his "two semesters" of UCLA were actually two semesters of signing up for UCLA Extension classes and never showing up.
He started out in TV, landing guest spots on shows like "Arrested Development" and "Desperate Housewives" before his break: a recurring role on "Gossip Girl" in 2009. A year later, he impressed audiences with his dual turn as the Winklevoss twins in the movie "The Social Network." That was followed by films like "The Lone Ranger" and "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." that were supposed to make Hammer a big star, only to flop.
His career seemed back on track with 2016's The Birth of a Nation based on the story of Nat Turner, the enslaved man who led a slave rebellion in Southampton County, Va., in 1831.
But following major Oscar buzz, the film was overshadowed by news of a 1999 alleged rape that director and star Nate Parker was accused of having committed. (Parker was acquitted.)
In 2019, many expected Hammer would receive an Oscar nod for Call Me By Your Name in which Hammer played a college student who has an affair with a teenage boy, played by Timothée Chalamet. The film itself was nominated, as was Chalamet. Some Hollywood insiders think Hammer hurt his own chances by getting political.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Hammer argued that his "Birth of a Nation" director Nate Parker had unfairly suffered career backlash - while actor Casey Affleck, was sued for sexual harassment by two female co-workers and had gone on to win an Oscar for Manchester by the Sea.
"Nate had the stuff in his past, which is heinous and tough to get beyond. I get that," he said. "But that was when he was 18, and now he's in directors jail. At the same time, the guy who went and won an Academy Award has three cases of sexual assault against him." (Hammer later apologised to Affleck.)
What will happen to Hammer's own career now is anyone's guess. As Page Six reported, he has "stepped down" from a leading role in the Jennifer Lopez movie Shotgun Wedding.
The On the Basis of Sex source believes this will "undoubtedly" hurt Hammer's career. "He is not box office gold - you can't sell a film with him - so why would you hire him when there are so many other better actors without this kind of story swirling around them?"
Hammer released a statement that read in part: "I'm not responding to these bulls - t claims but in light of the vicious and spurious online attacks against me, I cannot in good conscience now leave my children for four months to shoot a film in the Dominican Republic."
A casting director told The Post that Hammer is a cautionary tale for young Hollywood.
"Up till Call Me By Your Name nobody took him that seriously other than as a rich kid who wanted to get famous. He was in a lot of loser films before that," the casting director said. "But after 'Call Me,' he started getting much better offers and much more attention.
"He seemed to be getting a bit of a God complex - like he's so famous and rich, he's above reproach. That can lead to some actors having very bad behaviour."
This story originally appeared on Page Six and has been republished with permission
Originally published as 'Needs help': Inside star's 'God complex'