Morgan Freeman has issued a public apology after multiple women came forward to accuse him of sexual harassment.
Allegations against the star were made in an exclusive CNN report, after the news outlet spoke to 16 women who had worked with him across a number of projects.
Eight of the women they spoke to claimed to have been victims of sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour, with the other eight alleging to be witnesses.
Responding to the allegations in a statement, Freeman said: “Anyone who knows me or has worked with me knows I am not someone who would intentionally offend or knowingly make anyone feel uneasy.
“I apologize to anyone who felt uncomfortable or disrespected — that was never my intent.”
In the CNN investigation, a production assistant who worked on ‘Going In Style’ in 2015 alleged Freeman touched her inappropriately and made regular comments about her body and clothing, claiming he also tried to lift up her skirt to see if she was wearing underwear.
She also alleged director Alan Arkin “made a comment telling him to stop”, and he “got freaked out and didn’t know what to say”.
Another woman alleged Freeman sexually harassed her on multiple occasions while working on 2012 film ‘Now You See Me’.
She told CNN: “We knew that if he was coming by ... not to wear any top that would show our breasts, not to wear anything that would show our bottoms, meaning not wearing clothes that [were] fitted.”
According to CNN, other behaviours that Freeman displayed included staring at women’s breasts and asking a woman how she felt about sexual harassment.
The allegations made against Freeman come months after the Hollywood sexual harassment scandal began to unfold with claims made against Harvey Weinstein.
The film producer was accused of sexual misconduct by a number of high-profile figures from the entertainment industry. He has denied all allegations of, in his words, “non-consensual sex”.
The CNN report about Freeman was also published just hours after it was announced he is the new voice of Vancouver’s TransLink transport system.
A spokesperson for TransLink confirmed to HuffPost UK Freeman’s voice has been removed following the allegations, pending further conversations.
“In light of information we’ve learned this morning of allegations regarding actor Morgan Freeman, TransLink has decided to pause his voice announcements as part of a VISA ad campaign on our transit system,” they said.
“We will be reaching out to VISA to discuss further.”