Busy Philipps Details Claim That James Franco Physically Assaulted Her on Set of Freaks and Geeks

In Busy Philipps’s upcoming memoir,This Will Only Hurt a Little, the actress writes about her experiences in the industry, including her turn in cult classic series Freaks and Geeks.

Though the now beloved show only aired 18 episodes, it leaves a legacy as a launching pad for some of Hollywood’s most prominent players: Seth Rogen, Paul Feig, Judd Apatow, Linda Cardellini, Jason Segel, and James Franco.

Philipps, with her signature levity and humor, writes of her experiences with Franco during this time, noting that after a few months off, he returned to the press circuit with a new air of privilege: “It felt like over the summer he had read Easy Riders, Raging Bulls or something and had decided that the only way to be taken seriously was to be a f—king prick.”

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Philipps shared that one day on set, she hit Franco in the chest (in character, as directed) and instead of responding with his line, he “grabbed both my arms and screamed in my face ‘DON’T EVER TOUCH ME AGAIN!’” and threw her on the ground.

After word of the incident got back to Feig and Apatow, Franco was told to apologize, which he did, telling Philipps that after watching the tape, he realized what he did was “pretty mean.”

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This isn’t the first time Philipps has attempted to speak out about the assault. The actress recalled the incident, in less detail, during a Paley Fest cast reunion in 2011 (which Franco wasn’t present for), but the conversation quickly pivoted.

Philipps’s memoir is available for pre-order and will be released on Oct. 16.

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