James Franco returns to acting four years after sexual misconduct allegations

James Franco is returning to acting four years after he was accused of sexual misconduct.

The actor has been cast as a fisherman in Me, You, from director Bille August (who directed 1998’s Les Miserables) as well as the upcoming action movie Mace.

Franco, 44, said of his role in Me, You: ‘I am excited to board this phenomenal project and to be working with the legendary Bille August. I’m a huge fan of his work, and Me, You is a truly brilliant script.’

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Franco will star alongside Tom Hollander and Daisy Jacob in the post-WWII drama.

Franco stepped away from acting after facing allegations of sexual misconduct in 2018, with his last roles being in 2019.

In 2019, students at Studio 4, the actor’s now-closed film and acting school, sued Franco and his partners for allegedly ‘engaging in widespread inappropriate and sexually charged behaviour towards female students by sexualising their power as a teacher and an employer by dangling the opportunity for roles in their projects’. 

In 2020, Franco alleged the pair were ‘attention-hungry’ and made false and inflammatory’ claims for publicity. 

He later agreed on a settlement and reportedly agreed to pay $2.2million (£1.6million) to resolve the lawsuit.

Franco’s attorney previously denied each of the allegations and pointed towards his comments on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, where he said: ‘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, you know, shut them down in any way.’

Last year, Franco also addressed the allegations.

He said on Sirius XM: ‘In 2018 there were some complaints about me and an article about me and at that moment I just thought I’m gonna be quiet, I’m going to pause.

‘It did not feel like the right time to say anything. There were people that were upset with me and I needed to listen.’

Referencing the writer Damon Young, he explained he wanted to ‘do the work’.

Franco went on to say: ‘I was in recovery before for substance abuse. There were some issues that I had to deal with that were also related to addiction.

‘And so I’ve really used my recovery background to kind of start examining this and changing who I was.’

Franco’s best known for his roles in films like 127 Hours and The Disaster Artist, and his role as Harry Osborn in the Spider-Man franchise.

Metro.co.uk has contacted reps for James Franco for further comment.

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