Despite James Franco‘s efforts to deny the allegations of sexual misconduct made against him, three more women have come forward with their own detailed accounts. The Los Angeles Times published an exposé that alleges James’s acting school was an “inappropriate” and sexually exploitative” environment for women trying to make it in the industry.
Former students Hilary Dusome and Natalie Chmiel went into detail about their hostile interaction with James on a film shoot that took place in a strip club. Both claim that James became angry when none of the women on set wanted to take their tops off. “He just took advantage of our eagerness to work and be a part of something bigger,” Natalie told the LA Times.
“I felt like I was selected for something based on my hard work and my merit, and when I realized it was because I have nice [breasts], it was pretty clear that was not the case,” Hilary added.
Katie Ryan, another one of his students, claims James “would always make everybody think there were possible roles on the table if we were to perform sexual acts or take off our shirts.”
Actress Violet Paley, who first accused James during the 2018 Golden Globes, claims that he pressured her into performing oral sex on him. “I was talking to him, all of a sudden his penis was out,” she explained. I got really nervous, and I said, ‘Can we do this later?’ He was kind of nudging my head down, and I just didn’t want him to hate me, so I did it.”
She went on to say that she was able to get out of the situation by telling the actor she could see someone near their car. According to Violet’s tweets, James eventually apologized for his behavior by calling her personally and trying to make amends.
A couple weeks ago, James offered me & a few other girls an overdue, annoyed, convenient phone “apology”. I don’t accept, but maybe some other people’s lives would be made easier if he donated all of his earnings from “The Disaster Artist” to @RAINN01.
— Violet Paley (@VioletPaley) January 9, 2018
Sarah Tither-Kaplan, who also tweeted during the awards ceremony, alleges that she filmed a nude orgy scene with James three years ago for the film The Long Home, and that he removed the plastic guards covering several other actresses’ vaginas. “I feel there was an abuse of power, and there was a culture of exploiting non-celebrity women, and a culture of women being replaceable,” she said.
“I got it in my head pretty quickly that, okay, you don’t say ‘no’ to this guy,” Sarah added.
The Disaster Artist actor first denied the accusations on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, where he stated that the claims are “not accurate,” although he is ready to “fix” anything he needs to. He further addressed the claims on Late Night With Seth Meyers Wednesday night, just hours before the LA Times article was published.
“I have my own side of this story, but I believe in these people that have been underrepresented getting their stories out enough that I will hold back things that I could say just because I believe in that much,” he told host Seth Meyers. “If I have to take a knock because I’m not going to try and actively refute things, then I will because I believe in it that much.”
It should be noting that saying you could, but won’t “actively refute things” is basically actively refuting things — and that’s not even mentioning that he’s already tried to discredit the stories on Colbert by calling them “not accurate.” But it looks like James knows enough about the Time’s Up and #MeToo movements to realize that calling any of these women liars will not be very effective in redeeming himself.