James Franco, for years, has faced allegations of sexual impropriety and allegations that he preyed on young women, including a recent lawsuit claiming sexual harassment of actresses who signed up for his acting school, but they have done little to slow his career and the actor still has a full slate of projects — including an upcoming animated family film called Arctic Dogs.
On Thursday, Franco was sued by multiple women who claimed that the actor subjected them to sexual exploitation through his film school, Studio 4. The lawsuit claimed that Franco and his business partners “engaged in widespread inappropriate and sexually charged behavior towards female students by sexualizing their power as a teacher and an employer by dangling the opportunity for roles in their projects.”
This is not the first time Franco has been accused of sexual misconduct, and the allegations from some of the actresses suing him were published last year in a Los Angeles Times report on the accusations against his now-defunct acting school. But despite these allegations hanging over his head, Franco has not seen the backlash that some other accused actors and entertainers have faced.
When comedian and actor Louis CK faced sexual misconduct allegations, for example, the cable network FX moved swiftly to sever its relationship with him. Netflix also cut all ties with House of Cards actor Kevin Spacey after accusations that he made sexual advances toward an underage teenage boy.
The number of allegations against male actors has led to a movement called Time’s Up, led by Hollywood actors pushing for an end to sexual harassment and the exploitation of young actors by people in positions of power.
James Franco has not seen the same backlash amid his allegations. As Rolling Stone noted, the actor has continued to get major acting roles even after facing accusations, including a family friendly animated film set for release in just a few weeks.
“Even after the accusations against Franco, the actor appeared in films ranging from the Coen brothers’ The Ballad of Buster Scruggs to the upcoming animated film Arctic Dogs,” the report noted. “Franco also co-stars in the HBO series The Deuce, and a pair of his directorial works, Zeroville and The Pretenders, near release.”
In the wake of Thursday’s lawsuit, there was no word on whether any of James Franco’s upcoming projects would be affected, and the official Twitter page for Arctic Dogs had made no mention of the allegations to its 98 followers.