Hollywood actor James Franco is presently walking on thin ice as his acting school, Studio 4, is facing a lawsuit for sexual exploitation of students.
Franco is known for his role as Harry Osbourne in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy and his ability and creativity as an actor has made him branch into other areas like writing and painting.
According to The New York Times, allegations surrounding Franco have now escalated to legal action as two former female students of his defunct acting school have come forward with lawsuits, claiming that they experienced inappropriate and sexually charged behavior (along with other female students) from Franco and his partners.
The allegations first came up in January 2018 with five different women saying that the popular movie star had behaved inappropriately while mentoring them.
Now, the two former students, whose names are Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal, allege that a “master class” in sex scenes was offered at the school for the cost of $750. Actors had been required to audition on videotape, signing away their rights to the recordings.
The ladies say that in both the auditions for the classes and the classes themselves, they were urged to go beyond their comfort zones in simulated sex acts that went far beyond the movie industry’s standards. Gaal says that she had not been accepted into the class after she voiced her discomfort.
Franco and his Studio 4 partner, Vince Jolivette, are yet to respond to the accusations. This is not the first time Franco has been associated with sexual misconduct claims as he had admitted in 2014 that he had attempted picking up a 17-year-old girl through his Instagram account.
The allegations will have an effect on Franco’s career as he is not likely to get off the hook easily. Also, his upcoming movie roles may be put on hold as his reputation in the industry is now on the line until he is proven innocent or guilty.
James Edward Franco is an American actor, filmmaker, and academic born on April 19, 1978. He starred in Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) and Oz the Great and Powerful (20130 among other prominent movies. He is also known for his frequent collaborations with fellow actor Seth Rogen, having appeared with him in eight movies.