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Scarlett Johansson defends John Travolta after ‘unfortunate still-frame’

John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson, pictured at the Oscars on Feb. 22, 2015.
John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson, pictured at the Oscars on Feb. 22, 2015. Getty Images

Scarlett Johansson defended John Travolta on Thursday, calling the actor “a class act” and denouncing the image of the two on the Academy Awards red carpet as “an unfortunate still-frame” that doesn’t reflect a “totally sweet and totally welcome” encounter.

In an exclusive statement to The Associated Press, Johansson said “there is nothing strange, creepy or inappropriate about John Travolta.”

Travolta greeted Johansson at Sunday’s Oscars with a kiss and his arm around her waist. The photo has since been turned into an Internet meme, adding to an impression furthered by Travolta’s touching of Idina Menzel’s face while presenting at the Los Angeles ceremony.

READ MORE: Most touching John Travolta memes from the Oscars

“The image that is circulating is an unfortunate still-frame from a live-action encounter that was very sweet and totally welcome,” said Johansson. “That still photo does not reflect what preceded and followed if you see the moment live. Yet another way we are misguided, misinformed and sensationalized by the 24-hour news cycle. I haven’t seen John in some years and it is always a pleasure to be greeted by him.”

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Johansson and Travolta co-starred in the 2004 drama A Love Song for Bobby Long.

BELOW: More public displays of affection between John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson.

Scarlett Johansson and John Travolta, pictured in September 2004.
Scarlett Johansson and John Travolta, pictured in September 2004. Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images
John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson in September 2004.
John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson in September 2004. Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images
Scarlett Johansson and John Travolta in October 2014.
Scarlett Johansson and John Travolta in October 2014. Mark Mainz / Getty Images
Scarlett Johansson and John Travolta in December 2014.
Scarlett Johansson and John Travolta in December 2014. Kevin Winter / Getty Images