James Franco's university in sexual harassment scandal

Updated: Oct 05, 2019, 11:46 IST | Agencies |

After Robert De Niro was accused of leading a workplace that's abusive towards women, James Franco was pulled up for facilitating the exploitation of female students in school.

James Franco
James Franco

Two women have filed a lawsuit against Eat Pray Love actor James Franco, claiming that they were sexually exploited in his now-defunct acting school. Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal have alleged that the actor and his business partners "engaged in widespread inappropriate and sexually charged behaviour towards female students by sexualising their power as a teacher and an employer by dangling the opportunity for roles in their projects," an international publication quoted the court documents.

They are suing the actor, 41, for sexual discrimination, harassment and fraud. Following this, Michael Plonsker, Franco's attorney issued a statement that denied the allegations. "This is not the first time that these claims have been made, and they have already been debunked. We have not had an opportunity to review the ill-informed complaint in-depth since it was leaked to the press before it was filed, and our client has yet to even be served. James will not only fully defend himself, but will also seek damages from the plaintiffs and their attorneys for filing this scurrilous publicity-seeking lawsuit," the statement read.

Franco's acting school Playhouse West Studio 4 opened five years ago, and was shut in 2017.

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