Earlier this week, eight people came forward and accused Morgan Freeman of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior. The actor was quick to address the allegations with a statement on Friday.
“I am devastated that 80 years of my life is at risk of being undermined, in the blink of an eye, by Thursday’s media reports,” Freeman said through his publicist Stan Rosenfield, Variety reports.
Freeman acknowledges the importance of listening to victims of assault and harassment but attributes the allegations as misunderstandings. “I admit that I am someone who feels a need to try to make women—and men—feel appreciated and at ease around me,” Freeman continued in his statement.
“As a part of that, I would often try to joke with and compliment women, in what I thought was a light-hearted and humorous way. Clearly, I was not always coming across the way I intended.”
The actor also denied the allegations in his statement. “But I also want to be clear: I did not create unsafe work environments. I did not assault women. I did not offer employment or advancement in exchange for sex. Any suggestion that I did so is completely false.”
While the initial investigation reported by CNN was posted just a few days ago, these allegations have already resulted in consequences for Freeman. Commuters taking Vancouver public transit will no longer hear Freeman’s voiceover. Freeman was a part of a promotional campaign for Metro Vancouver, which would have had Freeman be the voice of various announcements. In light of the report, the transit authority has terminated the promotion.
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