James Franco returns to the role in the film “I, You”, his first film role after allegations of sexual harassment

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James Franco. Shutterstock
Let’s go back to the big screen. James Franco will star in the World War II drama “I, You,” his first film project since he was accused of sexual harassment four years ago.
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“I am very excited to be involved in this phenomenal project and to work with the legendary [director] Bill August,” the 44—year-old “Pineapple Express” star said in a statement to Entertainment Weekly about the film on Tuesday, July 12. I’m a big fan of his work, and “I, you” is a really brilliant script.”
Based on the novel “You, Mio” by Erri De Luca, the film tells the story of 16-year-old Marco, who befriended a fisherman named Nicola (Franco) during a trip to Italy with his father after World War II. While Nikola “entertains” Marco with stories about his military service, the teenager also meets and falls in love with 20-year-old Kaia (Daisy Jacob), who suffered at the hands of the SS during the war. The couple’s stories “arouse in Marco a fierce resentment against the SS,” according to the synopsis of the film. After meeting a group of “rude” German tourists, the teenager decides to avenge Kaia and her family.
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“I, You” became Franco’s first film project since he was accused of sexual harassment in early 2018. “In my life, I am proud to take responsibility for what I have done. I have to do this to preserve my well-being. I do it whenever I know that something is wrong or that it needs to be changed, I do it for sure,” the actor told “27 Hours” during an appearance in January 2018 on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” “What I heard on Twitter is not true, but I fully support people who come out and have the opportunity to speak out because they haven’t had a voice for so long. So I don’t want to, you know, close them in any way. I think it’s good, and I support it.”
A few days after he denied the allegations, five of Franco’s former students accused him of inappropriate behavior or sexual exploitation, alleging that he abused his power to force women to participate in scenes they were uncomfortable filming. “I feel like there was an abuse of power and there was a culture of exploitation of non—celebrity women and a culture of women who can be replaced,” said Los Angeles-based Sarah Teeter-Kaplan, who attended his Studio 4 film school in Hollywood. The Angeles Times in January 2018.
Another woman, aspiring director Violet Paley, was involved in a consensual romantic relationship with the Disaster Artist actor after meeting him in 2016. However, she claimed that he forced her to have oral sex with him while sitting in her car. “I was talking to him, and suddenly his penis fell out,” the 23-year-old man told the newspaper. “I got really nervous and said, ‘Can we do this later?’
Franco’s lawyer Michael Plonsker disputed all the charges at the time. In February 2021, Us Weekly confirmed that Franco had reached an agreement with Teaser-Kaplan and other women who filed a class action lawsuit against him, alleging sexual exploitation. According to court documents, the plaintiffs agreed to drop the lawsuit in exchange for unspecified monetary compensation.
Later that year, the California native responded to the allegations, saying that in 2016 he was being treated for sexual addiction. “It’s such a powerful drug, and I’m hooked on it for another 20 years,” Jess Cagle of SiriusXM told Franco in December 2021. “The trick is that I stayed sober all this time because of alcohol. …There was something in my head like, “Oh, I’m sober. I live a spiritual life.” As for the side, now I’m acting in all these other ways, and I couldn’t see it.”
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The Oscar winner also said that he decided to take a “pause” in the spotlight and focus on his recovery after the accusations against him. “I’ve just been working hard,” the Deuce graduate said when asked about what he’s been doing since 2018. to cope with this, they were also associated with addiction. And so I really used my recovery experience to kind of start learning about it and change who I was.”
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). A trained employee will provide confidential support without judgment, as well as local resources to help with treatment, recovery and more.