Maggie Gyllenhaal, who both stars on and is a producer of ‘The Deuce’, has said that she doesn’t believe the show should be shut down in the wake of misconduct allegations against co-star James Franco. In fact, she thinks it would be “the opposite of the right thing to do.”
The comments come in the wake of Busy Philipps’ claim that Franco assaulted her on the set of the 1999-2000 series ‘Freaks and Geeks.’ She said that Franco grabbed her arms, screamed in her face and pushed her to the ground. She also described him as a “f***ing bully” throughout their time on the show together.
‘The Deuce’ is set in New York City during the 1970s and '80s when porn and prostitution were rampant in Manhattan.
In an interview with SiriusXM radio host Sway Calloway yesterday, Gyllenhaal described the series as “about misogyny, it’s about transactional sex. It’s about inequality in the entertainment business. You couldn’t be more at the centre of that conversation than ‘The Deuce’.”
Asked about the incident with Phillips, as well as other sexual misconduct allegations made against Franco, Gyllenhaal said that “I felt it was my responsibility to do the opposite of ignore it. At the time that the accusations against James came out in the LA Times, we [she and the other producers] read them all, we took them very seriously.”
She continued: “We spoke to every woman on the crew and in the cast to find out if they felt respected and what their experience of working with James was and everyone said that they had been totally respected by him.”
Gyllenhaal added regarding the show’s storyline and message: “To me, I thought I want to keep telling this story, I want to keep playing Candy and going deep into, like, really what it’s like from a woman’s perspective to be dealing with all the stuff that is on everybody’s minds right now. I want to put it on TV. I want people to see it straight-up, look at the woman’s face who just got asked to give a blowjob for money. Here it is.
“I think I would have been so sorry not to be able to keep doing that and also not to be able to watch Emily Meade, who plays Lori, keep doing that [and] to watch Dominique [Fishback], who plays Darlene, keep doing it and to watch all of these women who are creating these incredible characters that are taking it on straight on.
“I feel like it would’ve been the wrong consequence to those accusations to shut our show down. It would’ve been, like, actually the opposite of the right thing to do. And yet I believe that there should be consequences for disrespecting or assaulting women. Of course I do.”
You can watch the interview below: