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Actor-director James Franco accused of sexual misconduct

James Franco @2x

It appears there are all sorts of predatory types in the entertainment industry, not just your stereotypical dirty old men.

The latest star to be accused of sexually inappropriate and exploitative behaviour is Oscar-winning actor and director James Franco.

Five women have come forward to allege Franco had manipulated them into sexual activity.

One of these is Sarah Tither-Kaplan, a former acting student at a film school Franco founded in North Hollywood called Studio4. Tither-Kaplan took to Twitter to state her claim of Franco’s sexual misconduct, writing “Hey James Franco, nice #timesup pin at the #GoldenGlobes, remember a few weeks ago when you told me the full nudity you had me do in two of your movies for $100/day wasn’t exploitative because I signed a contract to do it? Time’s up on that!”

Sarah Twitter @2x

The actress went on to tell the Los Angeles Times, “I feel there was an abuse of power, a culture of exploiting non-celebrity women, and a culture of women being replaceable,” describing a “bonus” nude orgy scene with Franco, on the set of his not-yet-released film The Long Home in 2015. She said Franco removed the protective sheaths that are ordinarily used on set to cover female genitals, and that Franco simulated oral sex on her and other women without protection.

Franco had attended this week’s Golden Globes ceremony, where he wore a ‘Time’s Up’ pin in support of awareness of sexual assault and harassment. He went home that night having won the award for Best Actor for his portrayal of B-grade actor-come-director Tommy Wiseau in The Disaster Artist.

Another actress, Violet Paley, alleges she and Franco began a romantic relationship several years ago, during which Franco once pressured her into performing oral sex while in her car.

“I was talking to him; all of a sudden his penis was out,” Paley told the Times. “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.” Strangely enough, Paley says she continued having consensual sex with Franco but that she would have handled the car encounter “differently”.

James Franco’s lawyer has so far disputed the allegations.  Antonino Tati

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