Busy Phillips said James Franco “threw me to the ground” during Freaks and Geeks, and this isn’t the first time she’s talked about the assault
Busy Philipps has a new memoir coming out this month, called This Will Only Hurt a Little, and in a passage leaked by RadarOnline.com today, October 8th, she writes about a time James Franco allegedly assaulted her on the set of Freaks and Geeks two decades ago.
According to the site, Philipps describes a time when she was directed to gently hit Franco as part of a scene they were filming when he suddenly broke character and flipped out.
"He grabbed both my arms and screamed in my face, ‘DON’T EVER TOUCH ME AGAIN!'" she wrote, according to RadarOnline.com. "And he threw me to the ground. Flat on my back. Wind knocked out of me."
This isn’t the first time Philipps has talked about this experience. She mentioned it during a PaleyFest panel discussion in 2011 (where Franco was not present):
And she shared the same story during a 2016 appearance on Watch What Happens Live. That time,she said that she and Franco are “friends now, and we really like each other now. But as kids we really didn’t get along.”
What’s notable about both of these clip is the forced breeziness in Philipps’s voice as she recounts the experience—a behavior that will be familiar to any woman who’s been abused by a man but knows that no one will take her seriously if she reveals how angry she really is.
In her book, though, Philipps is speaking out on her own terms—and she’s not holding back. She calls Franco—who has been accused of sexual misconduct by five women—a “fucking bully” and notes that though he apologized to her, he did so at the urging of the director and producers and was never really punished for his abusive behavior.
This Will Only Hurt a Little is available October 16th.