Although he was nominated for a major accolade, James Franco was notably absent from the 2018 Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday night ahead of the Oscars. Even though he wasn't present, the 39-year-old actor and his actions remained a topic of conversation at the event.
Back in January, several women came forward with accusations of sexual misconduct against Franco. Among the claims were that Franco once removed safety guards while filming an oral sex scene and would often become angry in his acting classes if women refused to film topless.
The Disaster Artist star denied the accusations during a late-night TV appearance, saying that “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."
However, the actor has still been staying out of the spotlight, skipping events like the Critics' Choice Awards and now the Independent Spirit Awards.
Despite his efforts to stay away from the public eye, Franco's name was still mentioned on the red carpet yesterday, when his sister-in-law Alison Brie came to his defense, claiming some of the reported information is inaccurate.
"I obviously support my family, and not everything that's been reported is fully accurate, so I think we're waiting to get all of the information," Brie, who is married to Dave Franco, James's younger brother, told DailyMail. "But of course I think now is a time for listening, and that's what we're all trying to do."
Brie made it clear that she and her family want victims to feel comfortable coming forward: "I think that above all what we've always said is that it remains vital that anyone who feels victimized should and does have the right to speak out and come forward."
The 35-year-old Glow star has previously expressed her support for the Time's Up movement, calling 2018 the "year of strong women" in her Golden Globes interview.