Ben Stiller faced backlash on social media Thursday after he supported a project featuring many star kids.

The 55-year-old actor came under fire after he supported an upcoming movie, titled "The Rightway," which features Sean Penn's son Hopper Penn and director Steven Spielberg's daughter. The movie is directed by Destry Spielberg and Owen King, who is the son of popular author Stephen King.

The cast for "The Rightway" was announced Tuesday. A Twitter user commented Wednesday that the short film's cast members included many star kids, sparking a debate between Producer Franklin Leonard and Stiller about nepotism in Hollywood.

Leonard wrote, "In fairness, this is apparently a short film. A short film whose casting apparently merited trade coverage." Stiller immediately came forward to defend the cast members and replied, "Too easy @franklinleonard. People, working, creating. Everyone has their path. Wish them all the best."

Leonard responded, "I do, without fail, but I also think it's important that we acknowledge those paths."

However, Stiller went on to share his own experience, "Yes. Just speaking from experience, and I don't know any of them, I would bet they all have faced challenges. Different than those with no access to the industry. Show biz as we all know is pretty rough, and ultimately is a meritocracy."

Leonard agreed that star kids also "faced challenges," adding, "I simply reject the claim that the industry is - in the short term or long term - a meritocracy. If it were, how do you explain the utter lack of diversity behind the camera? Lack of merit?"

Stiller said diversity is an issue in Hollywood and wrote, "100 percent agree. Diversity is much bigger issue. No question. And I see your point, access is access. So yes. I'm saying that untalented people don't really last if they get a break because of who they are or know or are related to."

Leonard replied that "numbers don't lie. Based only on the exclusion of other folks, statistically speaking, roughly 1/3 of the industry has their job not because of merit, but because of other factors (who they know, colonial legacy, sexism, whatever)."

Stiller stopped responding to Leonard after that. However, social media users continued to troll the actor for his comments. One of the users sarcastically wrote, "Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara's son would like you to know that Hollywood 'ultimately is a meritocracy.'"

Stiller last appeared in "Locked Down," which dropped on Jan. 14. The actor is currently filming an untitled Budd Schulberg documentary. Leonard serves as a producer on upcoming movies "College Republicans" and "The Silence of Mercy."

Ben Stiller
Ben Stiller joined the rally against hate in Brooklyn. Pictured: The movie actor posing for the camera at the screening of “Zoolander 2” at a central London cinema on Feb. 4. Reuters/Dylan Martinez