James Franco Admits To Having Sex With Students: ‘That Was Wrong’
James Franco has admitted to wrongdoing in the 2018 allegations against him of sexual misconduct. Multiple women accused him of having exploited them sexually when they were students at his now-defunct acting school in 2014. Earlier this year, he agreed to pay over $2.2 million to settle the class-action lawsuit.
At the time, Franco denied the allegations. He said on Stephen Colbert, “The things that I heard that were on Twitter are not accurate, but I completely support people coming out and being able to have a voice because they didn’t have a voice for so long. So I don’t want to, you know, shut them down in any way.”
Now, Franco has said on an episode of Jess Cagle‘s podcast on Thursday that the allegations against him were factual. “I did sleep with students,” he said. “That was wrong.”
However, he clarified, “But like I said, it’s not why I started the school and I wasn’t the person that selected the people to be in the class. So it wasn’t a ‘master plan’ on my part. But yes, there were certain instances where, you know what, I was in a consensual thing with a student and I shouldn’t have been.”
When the accusations first arose, Franco said that he did not admit culpability because it “did not feel like the right time to say anything.” He added, “There were people that were upset with me and I needed to listen.”
Franco discussed his mindset at the time, and what led him to commit the acts of sexual misconduct. He said that he had dealt with his recovery of alcoholism by replacing that addiction with an addiction to sex. Consequently, he said that he was “completely blind to power dynamics or anything like that, but also completely blind to people’s feelings.”
“I didn’t want to hurt people,” he said on the podcast. “In fact, I wasn’t really a one-night-stand guy. People that I got together with or dated, I’d see them for a long time, years. It’s just that I couldn’t be present for any of them. And the behavior spun out to a point where it was like I was hurting everybody.”
Since then, Franco said that he has “been doing a lot of work” and has tried “to kind of start examining this and changing who I was.”
Recently, his longtime filmmaking partner Seth Rogan said that he has no plans to work with Franco in the future. When asked about this, Franco said that Rogan’s comment was truthful.
“Of course, it was hurtful, in context, but I get it,” said Franco. “He had to answer for me ’cause I was silent. He had to answer for me, and I don’t want that. So that’s why, that’s one of the main reasons I wanted to talk to you today: I don’t want Seth or my brother or anyone to have to answer for me anymore.”
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