Hollywood’s biggest film and TV stars were all in attendance at this year’s Critics’ Choice Awards on Thursday (11 January), though there was one notable absentee.
James Franco’s latest offering ‘The Disaster Artist’ was up for four awards in this year’s show, including in the category of Best Actor In A Comedy, which he won, though the man himself was nowhere to be seen.
His absence came after five women came forward to the Los Angeles Times to accuse the actor of sexual misconduct, claiming he exploited his power over them while they were students at his film school.
Among the allegations were claims he became bad-tempered when two women refused to appear topless in a scene, and removed protective plastic guards that actresses had been wearing, while he simulated oral sex on them in an orgy scene.
HuffPost UK has reached out to representatives for James Franco for clarification.
Franco’s lawyer denied all accusations in the LA Times article, which came out following several women’s accusations of sexual harassment against him on Twitter, after he was seen sporting a ‘Time’s Up’ pin at this year’s Golden Globes.
In response to these tweets, Franco told talk show host Stephen Colbert: “Look, in my life, I pride myself on taking responsibility for things that I’ve done. I have to do that to maintain my well-being. I do it whenever I know that there’s something wrong or needs to be changed, I make it a point to do it.”
He continued: “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… shut them down in any way. It’s, I think, a good thing and I support it.”