Eight women have accused actor Morgan Freeman of sexual harassment or inappropriate behavior on-set, at his production company, and during press junkets, according to a report.
CNN reports that 16 people have spoken out against Freeman’s alleged misconduct, half of which claimed to have been victims of what some called “harassment,” and others termed “inappropriate behavior” by the actor.
One woman, a production assistant on 2017’s Going in Style, which starred Freeman, Alan Arkin and Michael Caine, claimed that Freeman, 80, harassed her for several months, including an incident in which he “kept trying to lift up my skirt and asking if I was wearing underwear.” Co-star Arkin allegedly asked Freeman to stop after several attempts at lifting her skirt, the woman said.
Another alleged victim who worked as a senior member on 2012’s Now You See Me claimed Freeman regularly made comments about production members’ bodies. The woman added that, as a result of Freeman’s alleged behavior, workers knew “not to wear anything that would show our bottoms, meaning not wearing clothes that [were] fitted.”
Others said Freeman “subjected them to unwanted touching,” and “made women feel uncomfortable at work” due to his behavior. However, many said they did not speak because they worried they would face professional repercussions.
Of the 16 people CNN interviewed, seven said Freeman’s alleged behavior on film sets carried over to Revelations Entertainment, his production company. Claims include that co-founder Lori McCreary once witnessed an alleged incident of misconduct, and that McCreary was once the target of “demeaning comments by Freeman in a public setting.”
Several entertainment reports also spoke with CNN, and said that Morgan had made inappropriate comments to them while promoting his films in the past. CNN’s Chloe Melas, who co-authored CNN’s investigation into the allegations against Freeman, said the actor harassed her during an interview about Going in Style. Melas was pregnant at the time, which prompted Morgan to allegedly tell her that “I wish I was there,” as well as “you are ripe.”
Chicago-based WGN-TV reporter Tyra Martin, meanwhile, said Morgan has made several inappropriate remarks to her over a decade of interviews, though she said she “never felt uncomfortable.” An anonymous reporter who belongs to the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, meanwhile, said that Morgan had made comments to her about her legs and clothing on two junket interviews.
The Academy Award-winning Freeman is a prolific, longtime actor with appearances in more than 120 film and television projects, according to IMDB, including Shawshank Redemption, Million Dollar Baby, and Driving Miss Daisy. Earlier this week, it was announced that Freeman would voice Vancouver, Canada’s transit system in a deal that was set to begin this summer.