After facing allegations of sexual misconduct for nearly four years, James Franco has finally admitted that he had been sleeping with students from his acting school.
In January 2018, Franco was facing sexual misconduct accusations from five women, four of whom were former students. The women claimed that the 127 Hours actor exhibited inappropriate sexual behavior.
Two of the former students decided to pursue legal action following the accusations.
In the lawsuit, Franco and four of his partners at Playhouse West Studio 4 school were accused of being involved in "widespread inappropriate and sexually charged behavior." Apparently, the group capitalized on their power as a teacher and employers by promising roles in their projects.
Franco defended himself, saying that the accusations were not accurate. However, earlier this year, it was reported that he had paid $2.23 m as a settlement for the lawsuit.
He has only recently admitted to sleeping with the students at the school, which he helped co-found back in 2014. While making the admission, he referred to a "sex scenes" masterclass mentioned in the suit against him.
According to the lawsuit, he "intimidated [students] into performing gratuitous sex scenes." However, he claims that the class was on "contemporary romance" and not "sex scenes."
Franco now realizes that the class had a provocative title.
According to the media, Franco claimed never to have slept with anyone in that particular class. Instead, he slept with students during his job as a teacher at the school, which he admits was "wrong."
The actor clarified that getting a chance to sleep with the students was not the reason he started classes. In fact, he did not choose the people in the class, which shows that meeting and sleeping with the students was not part of a "master plan."
Franco said that, in some cases, he got into a consensual sexual relationship with the students, and that should not have happened.
According to the actor, when the incidents took place, he was not "clear-headed." At the time, he thought that if the sexual encounters were consensual, then there was nothing wrong with them; but he now sees things differently.
Regarding the reason he did not first speak out about the accusations when they were first made, the actor has explained that he did not feel that it was the right time. Immediately following the allegations, many people were upset with him, and he needed to listen.
According to a revelation he made during the podcast on which he made these revelations, Franco has been recovering from sex addiction since 2016. However, after the accusations were made against him, he made a lot more effort.