US comic Louis CK accused of misconduct


Louis CK: Five women accuse US comic of sexual misconduct

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Image caption Louis CK's planned appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert has also been cancelled

US comedian Louis CK's movie premiere has been cancelled hours before the screening as five women levelled sexual misconduct allegations against him.

Four of the accusers told the New York Times he had masturbated during interactions with them and a fifth said he had asked to do so.

The BBC has contacted the Emmy-winning comic's manager for a comment.

The distributor of his new film, I Love You, Daddy, said it was reviewing plans for its general release.

Four comediennes – Dana Min Goodman, Julia Wolov, Rebecca Corry and Abby Schachner – and a fifth woman who spoke on condition of anonymity made allegations about the entertainer in Thursday's New York Times report.

Ms Goodman and Ms Wolov said Louis CK stripped naked and masturbated after inviting them to his hotel room during the US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colorado, in 2002.

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Image caption Actresses Julia Wolov (L) and Dana Goodman in Hollywood in 2011

Ms Corry told the newspaper that the comic was a guest star on a TV pilot she was appearing on in 2005 when he asked if he could go to her dressing room so she could watch him perform a sex act on himself.

She said she rebuked him and pointed out that he had a daughter and a pregnant wife.

Ms Schachner said she called Louis CK in 2003 to invite him to one of her shows and was dumbfounded to realise during their phone conversation that he was masturbating.

"I felt very ashamed," she told the New York Times.

A fifth woman, who did not want to be named, told the newspaper of alleged incidents involving the comic in the late 1990s while she was working in production on The Chris Rock Show.

Louis CK, who was a writer and producer on the show, repeatedly asked her to watch him perform a sex act, she said.

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Image caption A question mark now hangs over the general release of the comedian's new film

The accuser told the New York Times she went along with his requests even though she knew it was wrong.

"He abused his power," she said.

The premiere of Louis CK's new movie in New York City on Thursday night was abruptly called off.

I Love You, Daddy was written and directed by Louis CK, who also stars in the film as a father who tries to stop his 17-year-old daughter (Chloe Grace Moretz) from having a relationship with a seedy 68-year-old film director (John Malkovich).

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Rachel Corry said Louis CK asked if he could go to her dressing room so she could watch him perform a sex act

The movie's distributor, the Orchard, has not confirmed that it will go ahead with its release date in cinemas on 17 November.

"In light of the allegations considering Louis CK references in today's New York Times, we are cancelling tonight's premiere of I Love You, Daddy," the Orchard said in a statement to industry publications.

"There is never a place for the behaviour detailed in these allegations.

"As a result, we are giving careful consideration to the timing and release of the film and continuing to review the situation."

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Image caption "I felt very ashamed," Abby Schachner told the New York Times

Louis CK's planned appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert has also been cancelled.

On Thursday night, HBO announced it would purge Louis CK's past projects from its On Demand service.

The cable TV network also said the comic would no longer participate in a charity comedy special, Night of Too Many Stars, later this month.

In September at the Toronto film festival, where I Love You, Daddy, was shown, the New York Times said it had asked Louis CK about claims of sexual misconduct against him.

The divorced father of two daughters dismissed the reports as "rumours".

Louis CK joins a growing list of Hollywood figures including Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Brett Ratner and James Toback who have been engulfed by such allegations.

On Thursday, a Los Angeles County district attorney Jackie Lacey announced a task force of veteran sex crimes prosecutors to address "the widespread allegations of sexual abuse in entertainment industry".

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