Eight women have come out against Morgan Freeman by saying he sexually harassed them or displayed inappropriate behavior. He is also accused of employing women in exchange for sexual favors. CNN originally broke this news.
Freeman released a statement and denied any inappropriate actions made against these women. He feels that he’s being accused of these actions because he likes to make sexual jokes.
“I am devastated that 80 years of my life is at risk of being undermined, in the blink of an eye. All victims of assault and harassment deserve to be heard. And we need to listen to them. But it is not right to equate horrific incidents of sexual assault with misplaced compliments or humor. I admit that I am someone who feels a need to try to make women—and men—feel appreciated and at ease around me. As part of that, I would often try to joke with and compliment women, in what I thought was a light-hearted and humorous way.”
“But I also want to be clear: I did not create unsafe work environments. I did not assault women. I did not offer employment or advancement in exchange for sex. Any suggestion that I did so is completely false.”
CNN spoke to eight more people regarding Freeman and said that they were witnesses to his sexual misconduct. The 16 total people, including the victims, said that this behavior never stopped while he was on set.
Visa has currently suspended its partnership with Freeman. Expect more deals to end as more reports of these allegations surface.