Franco was booked on the show to discuss The Disaster Artist, a film he stars in and directed, and for which he won the Golden Globe for best actor in a musical or comedy, but the recent wave of accusations against him made the topic of his alleged misconduct unavoidable.
Paley was among five women to accuse The Disaster Artist star of sexually inappropriate behavior in a Los Angeles Times report published Thursday. In 2014, he used Instagram to ask a 17-year-old girl he'd met outside a NY theater if she had a boyfriend and whether she was 18. He was asked about the allegations of sexual misconduct put on him by five women on Twitter.
Hilary Dusome was under Franco's tutelage in 2012 and said at first she found him to be "a really generous spirit".
Like in most cases we have been hearing, the accusers stated that they believed Franco could offer them some type of career advancement, and went along with the abuse and his wishes even when they were uncomfortable.
One of the women, who was vocal on Twitter after the Golden Globes, was Sarah Tither-Kaplan, a former Studio 4 student of Franco's who appeared in some of his film projects. (Paley shared the email with TIME.) She said Franco never responded to her email, but he called her months later to tell her he was a "changed man" and that he was wrong to be in a sexual relationship with her while she was recovering from substance abuse.
Franco's attorney, Michael Plonsker, denied the claims.
Franco told Colbert that while the allegations against him were not true, he does not want to shut them down in any way. Vince Jolivette, Franco's production partner at Rabbit Bandini Productions, which ran Studio 4, said the school "was always run professionally" and that he was investigating the matter. "And there was a culture of exploiting non-celebrity women, and a culture of women being replaceable". "There are stories that need to get out", Franco told Meyers.
Two other students claimed that Franco became angry when, during a shoot, none of the actresses involved would agree to performing topless.
"I got it in my head pretty quickly that, OK, you don't say "no" to this guy", Tither-Kaplan told the L.A. Times. "I have no idea why she was upset".
"I am still reading it the same as everyone else, trying to discern what is or isn't there", Simon said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter. Franco maintained that the tweeted accusations were not accurate, but said that he would not try to actively refute them.
Franco told Colbert on Tuesday night that "if there's restitution to be made, I will make it". "It's such bulls-t", she said.
"I pride myself on taking responsibility for things I've done", he said, reiterating his position that the accounts were false.
"The power dynamic was way off", she recalled.