Busy Philipps has claimed that James Franco assaulted her on the set of Freaks And Geeks.
The actors appeared on the cult series together in 1999 and 2000. Philipps played Kim Kelly, while Franco starred as Daniel Desario.
In a section of her upcoming memoir, This Will Only Hurt A Little, which was obtained by Yahoo!, Philipps said the alleged incident happened while the pair were filming a scene where she was required to hit Franco gently in the chest while they were involved in a dialogue. Franco was apparently caught off guard by the action and broke character to react angrily.
“He grabbed both my arms and screamed in my face, ‘DON’T EVER TOUCH ME AGAIN!’” Philipps is said to have written. “And he threw me to the ground. Flat on my back. Wind knocked out of me.”
She said she cried about the incident in front of her co-star Linda Cardellini, who played Lindsay Weir. Cardellini advised her to report it to her manager but Philipps didn’t. Franco apologised to her the next day after reportedly being forced to do so by the show’s producers and director.
According to Philipps, Franco was never formally reprimanded for his behaviour. She added that he was a “fucking bully” throughout their time on the show together.
Earlier this year, Franco was accused of sexual misconduct and inappropriate behaviour by five women. The actor has stated that the allegations against him are “not accurate”, but he didn’t want to shut the women who made them “down in any way”.
“I completely support people coming out and being able to have a voice because they didn’t have a voice for so long,” he said when asked about the claims during a TV interview. “I think it’s a good thing and I support it.”