No, Morgan Freeman, insists in a new statement:
NOT me too.
In a disturbing new CNN report that came out this week, the veteran actor was accused by eight different women of sexual misconduct and/or harassment.
The authors behind this report said they spoke to the eight women, along with eight separate witnesses, all of whom offered similar descriptions of Morgan’s behavior over the years.
For example, one production assistant on the 2017 movie Going In Style told CNN that Morgan “kept trying to lift up my skirt and asking if I was wearing underwear.”
He did until a co-star told him to stop.
Then there was a senior production staff member on the set of the 2013 film Now You See Me who told CNN that Morgan made so many inappropriate comments about her attire that she stopped wearing tight articles of clothing around him.
A CNN reporter named Chloe Melas even went on record with the charge that Morgan frequently looked her up and down and referred to as “ripe” when she interviewed the star last year.
Oh, and she was six months pregnant at the time.
In response to these accusations, Morgan said the following on Thursday:
Anyone who knows me or has worked with me knows I am not someone who would intentionally offend or knowingly make anyone feel uneasy.
I apologize to anyone who felt uncomfortable or disrespected – that was never my intent.
Not exactly the most effective apology ever, right?
He’s basically saying he did all this stuff, he just didn’t mean to offend anyone via his actions.
Now, with his name being associated with others who have been brought down by the #MeToo movement, the 80-year old has issued a far more strongly-worded statement.
He wants to make a few things clear.
“I am devastated that 80 years of my life is at risk of being undermined, in the blink of an eye, by Thursday’s media reports,” he opened, adding:
“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 a part of that, I would often try to joke with and compliment women, in what I thought was a light-hearted and humorous way.”
Clearly I was not always coming across the way I intended. And that is why I apologized Thursday and will continue to apologize to anyone I might have upset, however unintentionally.
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.
This is all well and good and likely true.
But no one has accused Morgan of assault.
They’ve said he treated women on set with extreme disrespect, basically viewing them as nothing but sex objects.
Is this as bad as actually assaulting them? Of course not.
However, the behavior is still part of a significant issue in society that is thankfully being addressed more and more often these days. It’s simply the issue of treating both men and women with equaly amounts of respect.
Morgan is an Oscar winner who is best known for a handful of iconic movie roles.
His most notable films include: Million Dollar Baby, The Shawshank Redemption and Batman Begins.
Let’s hope he has learned some valuable lessons from the allegations leveled against him here.