James Franco comes to an amicable settlement with the students accusing him of sexual misconduct


In 2019, Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal, two former students of James Franco’s theater school in Los Angeles, Studio 4, filed a complaint against the actor for bullying and inappropriate sexual conduct. As reported by the New York Times , the actor reached an agreement with the two plaintiffs who agreed to drop the charges against him. A decision confirmed by the lawyers of the two women at the Associated Press agency.

The two young women accused the 42-year-old actor of putting pressure on them, as well as on several students, to undress during auditions. Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal have also accused James Franco of pushing them to act ” orgy-type ” scenes in front of a camera, as part of a class on movie sex scenes. The 127-hour actor had also removed the plastic protections covering the actresses’ vaginas before miming oral sex scenes.

The plaintiffs therefore attacked James Franco for having ” created a network of young women subjected to his personal and professional sexual exploitation “. These did not hesitate to portray inappropriate behavior on the part of the entire teaching staff of the establishment.

A salvo of accusation

If the actor has always denied these accusations, they were added to the testimonies of other women in 2018. That same year, Violet Paley, at the time aged 23, had also attacked the actor for the ‘forcing him to give him a blowjob. Two others, Hilary Dusome and Natalie Chmiel, explained how James Franco had asked them to remove their tops during a shoot in a strip club, and how the latter had left furious at their refusal.

This round of accusations was triggered during the Golden Globes ceremony , when the actor presented himself with a pin in support of the organization Time’s Up , fighting for victims of sexual assault at work. That same year, he received the award for best actor for the film The Disaster Artist.