James Franco has signed off on paying $2,235,000 to settle an Oct. 2020 lawsuit alleging he and his associates coerced students into performing explicit sex scenes on camera. The proposed figure was revealed in court filings that were made public on Wednesday, and a Los Angeles judge will need to approve it.
Last year, Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal filed a class action complaint in Los Angeles County Superior Court, alleging that Franco and his partners “engaged in widespread inappropriate and sexually charged behavior towards female students by sexualizing their power as a teacher and an employer by dangling the opportunity for roles in their projects.” They argued they were victims of fraud, paying $300 a month for an acting school opened by Franco and his business partner Vince Jolivette in 2014 at which they claimed they were intimidated and sexually objectified. They further alleged that those who were willing to disrobe in front of Franco and his friends were given special treatment.
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The settlement would mean Tither-Kaplan and Gaal would drop their claims, with other members of the class given a period of time to opt out should they choose to further pursue their case. Any unclaimed monies would be contributed to the National Women’s Center.
More to come.
Angelique Jackson contributed to this report.
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