The actress writes about the alleged incident in an excerpt from her upcoming memoir, ‘This Will Only Hurt a Little.’
Busy Philipps claims in her forthcoming memoir, This Will Only Hurt a Little, that James Franco physically assaulted her on the set of their cult comedy Freaks and Geeks, where they played a tumultuous high school couple onscreen.
In her book, Philipps remembers that the script called for her character, Kim Kelly, to gently nudge Franco’s Daniel Desario in the chest. Philipps writes that the scripted gesture caused Franco to get upset, after which he allegedly “threw” the actress to the ground in retaliation.
“He grabbed both my arms and screamed in my face, ‘DON’T EVER TOUCH ME AGAIN!'” Philipps writes in the book. “And he threw me to the ground. Flat on my back. Wind knocked out of me.”
Philipps goes on to say that she tearfully described the alleged incident to her other Freaks and Geeks co-star Linda Cardellini, who suggested that Philipps report what happened to her manager. Philipps writes that Franco eventually apologized after being told to do so by the episode’s director and producers. Though he was asked to say he was sorry, Philipps says that Franco was never punished for his alleged behavior.
Philipps said she and Franco have since discussed what happened on set and that he apologized.
“It wasn’t even outrageous. At the time, 19 and with my first professional acting job, I was under the impression that this was just the way things were,” she said. “James and I have talked about it over the years. At one point he apologized to me. I was always acutely aware of my expendability, and so I felt I needed to never complain, always show up on time and not be difficult. If someone else was being difficult, it was my job to be the easy one or figure out a way to soothe the situation.”