In her upcoming memoir This Will Only Hurt A Little, actress Busy Philipps recounts an incident of alleged assault by James Franco while on the set of Freaks & Geeks, according to an excerpt published by Radar Online. Both starred on the show's single season between 1999 and 2000, and Philipps writes that after hitting him on the chest for a scene, Franco broke character and pushed her to the ground.
"He grabbed both my arms and screamed in my face, 'DON'T EVER TOUCH ME AGAIN!'" Philipps writes. "And he threw me to the ground. Flat on my back. Wind knocked out of me."
Reps for Philipps and Franco did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
"He felt like he wanted his character to be one way," Philipps told host Andy Cohen. "He had had a discussion with the producers that he came from an abused family or something, and so he didn't want his girlfriend — I played his girlfriend — to ever physically hit him. I never knew this conversation existed, and in an improv, I smacked him on the thing, and he was like, 'Don't ever touch me,' and grabbed me and shoved me to the ground. It was an overreaction by a 19-year-old dude. And it was weird and people's agents had to be called and he had to apologize to me."
In her memoir, Philipps says that although Franco was ordered to apologized, he was never punished.
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).