Seth Rogen has spoken out about his professional relationship with frequent co-star and collaborator James Franco, saying that he has no plans to work with him following allegations of sexually inappropriate behavior.
In an interview with The Sunday Times, Rogen addressed the allegations, as well as his 2014 “Saturday Night Live” opening monologue, where he joked about a 17-year-old girl’s allegation that Franco had direct messaged her on Instagram to meet up.
“I decided to prank James Franco,” Rogen says during the monologue. “I posed as a girl on Instagram, told him I was way young. He seemed unfazed. I have a date to meet him at the Ace Hotel.”
“What I can say is that I despise abuse and harassment and I would never cover or conceal the actions of someone doing it, or knowingly put someone in a situation where they were around someone like that,” Rogen told the Times. “However, I do look back at a joke I made on ‘Saturday Night Live’ in 2014 and I very much regret making that joke. It was a terrible joke, honestly.”
Allegations of sexual misconduct were made against Franco once again in 2018, when several students at his former acting school accused him of intimidating them into sexual situations. The allegations — which Franco has denied — turned into a lawsuit, which was settled in February. Despite the allegations, Rogen has said in past interviews that he would continue to work with Franco — but Rogen says that has now changed.
“I also look back to that interview in 2018 where I comment that I would keep working with James, and the truth is that I have not and I do not plan to right now,” Rogen said.
Rogen confirmed that it is “not a coincidence” that his professional relationship with Franco seems to have come to an end, and said that the allegations have affected their personal friendship as well.
“I don’t know if I can define that right now during this interview,” Rogen said of their friendship. “I can say it, um, you know, it has changed many things in our relationship and our dynamic.”
In response to the Times’ comment that the situation “must have been painful,” Rogen said: “Yeah. But not as painful and difficult as it is for a lot of other people involved. I have no pity for myself in this situation.”
Representatives for Rogen and Franco did not immediately respond to Variety‘s request for comment.