James Franco starred in sexual harassment skit on 'Saturday Night Live' weeks before misconduct allegationsJanuary 12, 2018 11:16pm

Jan. 12--James Franco starred in a "Saturday Night Live" skit about sexual harassment in the workplace just one month before multiple women accused him of sexual misconduct.

The actor, who hosted "SNL" two weeks before Christmas, portrayed a fired corporate executive who apologizes for his impropriety to a handful of employees in the segment.

"I just want to say to all of you that I am truly and deeply sorry for anything inappropriate that I may have done while working here," Franco's character, CFO Doug Gifford, says in the skit.

The employees refuse to forgive Gifford for his actions, such as calling a female co-worker his "little honey bee" or commenting on another's appearance in a dress. But they laugh off the misconduct of another recently terminated employee, an older security guard named Charlie (played by Kenan Thompson), who the staff all find charming despite him repeatedly ogling over women.

The skit aired on Dec. 9 amid the sexual misconduct scandals swirling around Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Brett Ratner and more.

On Thursday, five women -- including four of his former students -- accused Franco of inappropriate or sexually exploitative behavior in a report published by the Los Angeles Times. The allegations came shortly after Franco won a Golden Globe for his performance in "The Disaster Artist" at last Sunday's award show.

His attorney refuted the allegations.

Two of the women who came forward in the Times article, Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Violet Paley, spoke out against Franco on Twitter a few days before that report was published.

Actress Ally Sheedy, who worked with Franco on the 2014 off-Broadway play "The Long Shrift," also shared three cryptic tweets about Franco's attendance at the Golden Globes, where women wore black to protest sexual harassment, but Sheedy did not accuse Franco of anything.

Franco denied the accusations of inappropriate behavior in an appearance on Stephen Colbert's "The Late Show" on Tuesday and said he did not know why Sheedy tweeted about him.

"I pride myself on taking responsibility for things that I have done," he told Colbert. "I have to do that to maintain my well-being. The things that I heard that were on Twitter are not accurate. But I completely support people coming out and being able to have a voice because they didn't have a voice for so long. So I don't want to shut them down in any way."

Franco did not attend the Critics' Choice Awards on Thursday evening but earned best actor honors at the show.

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