In light of five new sexual harassment allegations against him on Thursday, James Franco is laying low. Even though his movie The Disaster Artist is continuing a successful award show run, Franco skipped Thursday's Critics' Choice Awards and wasn't there to collect the award he won for Best Actor in a Comedy.
The award was presented during the one-hour pre-show by Vice Principals star Walton Goggins. The pre-show was streamed online before the main show was broadcast. When Goggins announced Franco as the winner in the category, there was a smattering of applause before Goggins announced that Franco wasn't there to accept the award. It was definitely a pretty awkward moment.
Considering that Franco has now been accused of sexual misconduct by so many women, he likely made the right choice to stay home from the ceremony. We've already seen these kinds of accusations topple the careers of men more powerful than Franco — Harvey Weinstein, Louis C.K. and Kevin Spacey, to name a few. And while Franco's attorney keeps denying that's there's any truth to any of the claims (Franco himself hasn't made a public statement since the new allegations were published Thursday), five accounts from five separate women are hard to ignore.
In the days of the #MeToo movement and the Time's Up initiative, patience for this kind of behavior — both in Hollywood and among the public — is wearing increasingly thin. Franco is now learning that his actions have consequences, as powerful men before him have learned in recent months and as powerful men after him will learn in months to come.
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