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Aziz Ansari has issued a statement in response to some pretty damning allegations.
Over the weekend, a photographer went public with details of date gone horribly wrong she says took place between her and Ansari in September.
The woman, who goes by the name “Grace” in her account to Babe.net, says she me the actor at a post-Emmys party last fall.
After exchanging phone numbers, she and the Master of None star went out one night before ending up back at Ansari’s apartment.
It was then, the woman alleges, that Ansari became sexually aggressive.
She says he immediately went to get a condom, not long after the two started kissing, and that she continually placed her hand on his penis.
“He probably moved my hand to his dick five to seven times,” she told the aforementioned website. “He really kept doing it after I moved it away.”
Grace explained that Aziz briefly performed oral sex on her and vice versa, but that she also made it clear she didn’t want anything to progress further.
In her recounting of the incident, Grace emphasizes that Ansari ignored her “verbal and non verbal cues.”
After finally stopping their hook-up and collecting her emotions in the bathroom, Grace says she hoped to finish the night on a happy note.
But even after acknowledging that he didn’t want to pursue sex if Grace wasn’t also having “fun,” Ansari pressured her again into going down on him and into making out a lot more.
“It took a really long time for me to validate this as sexual assault,” she told Babe, adding:
“I was debating if this was an awkward sexual experience or sexual assault.
“And that’s why I confronted so many of my friends and listened to what they had to say, because I wanted validation that it was actually bad.”
After their encounter, Grace sent Ansari a text that detailed how he made her feel, saying in part:
“You kept going with advances. You had to have noticed I was uncomfortable.”
The actor responded with contrition.
Grace shared both of these messages with Babe.net. First, a look at hers:
Now, a look at what Ansari said in reply:
The alleged victim concluded that this was the “worst experience” she ever had with a man and that it made her sick to see Ansari with a Time’s Up pin at the Golden Globes, claiming to support the #MeToo movement.
A few hours after she made these claims, Ansari responded with a statement through his publicist.
It reads as follows:
In September of last year, I met a woman at a party. We exchanged numbers.
We texted back and forth and eventually went on a date. We went out to dinner, and afterwards we ended up engaging in sexual activity, which by all indications was completely consensual.
The next day, I got a text from her saying that although ‘it may have seemed okay,’ upon further reflection, she felt uncomfortable.
It was true that everything did seem okay to me, so when I heard that it was not the case for her, I was surprised and concerned.
I took her words to heart and responded privately after taking the time to process what she had said.
I continue to support the movement that is happening in our culture. It is necessary and long overdue.
We’ll continue to update this story as more news breaks.
Do you think Ansari deserves to be included among the accused men of Hollywood for his actions in this case?
Aziz Ansari is the latest big name to be accused of sexual misconduct.
In the case of the former Parks and Recreation star, and current creator of Netflix’s Master of None, an unnamed photographer has come out and accused Ansari of going way too far on a date last year.
According to a series of text messages between Ansari and this alleged victim, the incident occurred in September.
The woman, who is referred to a “Grace” in her account to Babe.net, says she and Ansari bonded at an after-Emmy Awards party due to their shared passion for photography.
They later went out and ended up back at his apartment.
Grace says she felt “uncomfortable” with how quickly Ansari undressed himself and then her.
Within moments of their first kiss, Grace says Ansari went to get a condom.
“I said something like, ‘Whoa, let’s relax for a sec, let’s chill,'” recounts Grace, adding that the actor then briefly performed oral sex on her before asking her to do the same to him.
“It was really quick. Everything was pretty much touched and done within ten minutes of hooking up, except for actual sex,” Grace now details.
Ansari would frequently place his fingers in Grace’s mouth and then try to “finger” her vagina, she says, emphasizing that he also forced her hand onto his penis.
“He probably moved my hand to his dick five to seven times,” she says. “He really kept doing it after I moved it away.”
Grace describes the troubling encounter as seeming like a “game” to Ansari, who she alleges kept following her around his apartment.
She says she gave him repeated “verbal and non-verbal” clues that she was NOT interested in going any further.
She eventually excused herself to go into the bathroom and collect herself.
After relaying her discomfort to Ansari, she thought the possibility of sex was finally no longer an issue in his mind and she stuck around for a little while longer.
But after the star again motioned for her to give him a blow job and made out with her once more, she left the residence in tears.
“I cried the whole ride home. At that point I felt violated,” says Grace.
The following day, Grace texted Ansari.
“Last night might have been fun for you it wasn’t for me,” she said in a message that she saved and has now made public.
“When we got back to your place, you ignored clear, non-verbal cues; you kept going with advances. You had to have noticed I was uncomfortable,” she continued.
Ansari then replied and did apologize for his actions.
The woman says she decided to come forward after she saw Ansari wearing a Time’s Up pin at the Golden Globes, supporting the foundation that has been set up to support victims of sexual assault.
Ansari won Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy TV Series for his lead role on Master of None at the event.
Grace says her friends helped her grapple with the aftermath of her evening with Ansari.
“It took a really long time for me to validate this as sexual assault,” she told Babe.
“I was debating if this was an awkward sexual experience or sexual assault. And that’s why I confronted so many of my friends and listened to what they had to say, because I wanted validation that it was actually bad.”
“I believe that I was taken advantage of by Aziz.”
“I was not listened to and ignored. It was by far the worst experience with a man I’ve ever had.”
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At last night’s Critics Choice Awards, James Franco won the award for best actor for his performance in The Disaster Artist, a film that he also wrote and directed.
That title has taken on added meaning this week, as the award season that should have been the peak of Franco’s long career in Hollywood has instead been one long catastrophe for the actor and filmmaker.
Of course, if there’s any truth to the allegations against him, then Franco has no one to blame for this precipitous downfall but himself.
The unraveling of Franco’s career and carefully-cultivated image as the heir apparent to Johnny Depp’s “eccentric but lovable artsy weirdo” image began on Sunday night when the 39-year-old took home one of the night’s biggest prizes at the 2018 Golden Globes.
During the ceremony, actress Ally Sheedy posted a series of tweets implying that Franco had behaved inappropriately while directing her in a 2014 Off-Broadway play.
Sheedy later deleted the tweets, but her example prompted other women who claim to have been mistreated by Franco to come forward with their own stories.
Now, less than a week after the actor kicked off what looked to be a dominant award season run, no fewer than five women have accused Franco of sexual misconduct.
The allegations run the gamut from coercing a young woman into performing oral sex to becoming angry when actresses filming a scene in a strip club refused to perform topless.
Franco sat for interviews with both Stephen Colbert and Seth Meyers this week, explaining to both hosts that he denies the allegations against him, but supports the right of his accusers to go public with their version of events.
At first, it looked as though Franco would continue making the media rounds in order to improve his film’s chances with Oscar voters.
Last night, however, the actor skipped the Critics Choice ceremony, and actor Walton Goggins accepted the best actor award on his behalf.
“He’s in a really bad place, so bad that he changed his phone number,” a source close to the situation tells People magazine.
“His close friends are trying to be there for him but it’s been hard – he’s only talking to a select group of people. For now, he’s just hiding out.”
Speaking with Meyers on Tuesday night, Franco stated that he’s refrained from actively defending himself so as not to discourage women who have been abused or suffered unfair treatment from coming forward.
“There are people that need to be heard,” the actor said.
“I have my own side of this story, but I believe in these people that have been underrepresented getting their stories out enough that I will hold back things that I could say, just because I believe in it that much.”
“So if I have to take a knock because I’m not going to try and actively refute things, then I will, because I believe in it that much.”
We will further updates on this developing story as more information becomes available.
At this point, we’re sadly unsurprised when one of Hollywood’s most influential men is accused of some form of sexual misconduct.
The cycle of accusation, apology, and fallout has become all too familiar and, for the most part, fairly easy to predict.
But as award season kicks into high gear, James Franco is defying convention by refusing to step away from the spotlight or even apologize for his alleged past behavior.
On Sunday night, Franco won a Golden Globe for his performance in The Disaster Artist, a film that he also wrote and directed.
His celebration was short-lived, however, due number of tweets posted by actress Ally Sheedy that hinted at sexual misconduct on Franco’s part.
Shortly thereafter, a woman named Violet Paley came forward with allegations that Franco had sexually assaulted her when she was just 17 years old.
In the 48 hours that followed, four other women came forward
“I was talking to him, all of a sudden his penis was out,” Paley said.
“I got really nervous, and I said, ‘Can we do this later?’ He was kind of nudging my head down, and I just didn’t want him to hate me, so I did it.”
Paley went on to date Franco, but says when she reflects on the incident, she feels she was coerced into performing oral sex despite feeling uncomfortable about it.
“I would say, ‘No, stop, get out of my car.’ The power dynamic was really off,” she tells the
Paley says she emailed Franco after the Harvey Weinstein sex scandals surfaced to make him aware that she felt she had been mistreated.
She says he didn’t respond right away, but eventually called to try and make amends.
Sarah Tither-Kaplan, an acting student at Franco’s Studio 4 film school, also elaborated on allegations against the 39-year-old today.
Tither-Kaplan claims that whle shooting the 2014 film The Long Home, Franco removed protective plastic guards that covered actresses’ vaginas while he simulated oral sex.
“I got it in my head pretty quickly that, okay, you don’t say ‘no’ to this guy,” Tither-Kaplan said.
Hilary Dusome and Natalie Chmiel, two other students of Franco’s, detailed an incident in which the actor allegedly got angry when no actresses would agree to go topless while filming a scene in a strip club.
“I felt like I was selected for something based on my hard work and my merit, and when I realized it was because I have nice [breasts], it was pretty clear that was not the case,” Dusome said.
“I don’t think he started teaching with bad intentions, but he went down a bad path and damaged a lot of people in the process.”
In the wake of the allegations, Franco has continued to make talk show and other media appearances in hopes of improving his film’s chances of securing several possible Oscar nominations.
On Tuesday night, Franco denied responsibility in an interview with Stephen Colbert.
Wednesday, he appeared on Seth Meyers’ show, where he again declined to admit to any wrongdoing, but stated that he supports the rights of women to come forward with such accusations.
“This is a conversation that obviously needs to be had,” he told Meyers.
“There are people, women and others, who have not been a part of this conversation and I truly believe that they need to be. So I support that.”
Asked if he had contacted Sheedy to ask why she felt compelled to publicly call him out, Franco became visibly uncomfortable.
“I don’t know. I … It was so shocking. I don’t know. I just … I guess I’m just letting it be,” he said.
We’ll have further updates on this developing story as more information becomes available.
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It’s been a hectic 72 hours in the life of James Franco.
On Sunday night, the celebrated actor/director/artsy weirdo won a Golden Globe for his portrayal of fellow actor/director/artsy weirdo Tommy Wiseau in The Disaster Artist.
It was inarguably one of the biggest highlights of a career filled with critical acclaim and tremendous commercial success.
Within minutes of Franco’s acceptance speech, however, the 39-year-old was publicly accused of several incidents of sexual misconduct and brahypocriteoctrite for his ostensible support of the Time’s Up initiative.
Actress Ally Sheedy was the first to hint at abusive behavior on Franco’s part, posting a series of scathing tweets that have since been deleted.
“Why is James Franco allowed in? Said too much. Nite love ya,” she began.
“James Franco just won. Please never ask me why I left the film/tv business,” Sheedy wrote during Franco’s acceptance speech.
At one point, she implied that actor Christian Slater was also guilty of some sort of misconduct, tweeting:
“Ok wait. Bye. James Franco and Christian Slater at a table on @goldenglobes #MeToo”
Many stated that they were not surprised by Sheedy’s accusations.
Some called attention to Franco’s history of sexual misconduct.
(In 2014, the actor was accused of attempting to seduce a 17-year-old girl via Instagram.)
Others tweeted about appalling firsthand experiences with Franco.
“Cute #TIMESUP pin James Franco. Remember the time you pushed my head down in a car towards your exposed penis & that other time you told my friend to come to your hotel when she was 17?” tweeted a woman named Violet Paley, adding:
“After you had already been caught doing that to a different 17 year old?”
Paley later followed up by writing:
“A couple weeks ago, James offered me & a few other girls an overdue, annoyed, convenient phone ‘apology’. I don’t accept, but maybe some other people’s lives would be made easier if he donated all of his earnings from ‘The Disaster Artist’ to @RAINN01.”
Franco is already experiencing preliminary fallout from the accusations, as at least one promotional event for The Disaster Artist has been canceled.
Franco appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert last night, where he denied the allegations against him while at the same time expressing sympathy toward his accusers.
“I haven’t read [the accusations.] I’ve heard about them,” Franco said.
“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.”
Asked about Sheedy’s allegations, Franco replied:
“I have no idea what I did to Ally Sheedy. I directed her in a play Off Broadway. I had nothing but a great time with her, total respect for her. I have no idea why she was upset
We’ll have further updates on this developing story as more information becomes available.
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