From the New York Times:
By Sopan Deb
May 24, 2018
Morgan Freeman, one of the most celebrated actors in the film industry, has been accused of sexual harassment by several women, according to a report by CNN on Thursday. The accusations ranged from unwanted touching to sexually suggestive comments — on movie sets, in office environments and during meetings with the news media.
One production assistant told CNN that she had endured several months of harassment while working on the set of “Going in Style,” a film released last year starring Mr. Freeman, Alan Arkin and Michael Caine. She said that on one occasion Mr. Freeman had tried to lift up her skirt until Mr. Arkin intervened. A woman described as a senior member of the production staff of “Now You See Me,” a 2013 movie, said Mr. Freeman would routinely comment on her physical appearance and that of her assistant.
Three reporters said that Mr. Freeman made inappropriate comments to them during publicity events to promote coming films. One reporter, Chloe Melas of CNN, said that, during an interview last year for “Going in Style,” when she was six months pregnant, Mr. Freeman looked her up and down and told her, “You are ripe.” A camera caught Mr. Freeman saying “Boy, do I wish I was there,” directed toward Ms. Melas. CNN aired the video with the remark on Thursday.
“Right when I walked into the room, he began to make sexually suggestive comments to me,” Ms. Melas, one of the authors of the CNN report, said on air Thursday. “As an entertainment reporter for over a decade, it was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.”
That was totally inappropriate from a leading man … a leading man who is 80 years old, that is.
From a 60-year-old Morgan Freeman in 1998, well, that would have been rather flattering, not to mention kind of sexy. But 80-year-old Morgan Freeman is just gross!
Seriously, after a long working career as an actor without much stardom, a middle-aged Freeman first came to widespread notice in the 1987 movie Street Smart playing a pimp. He has often remarked since then that he was pretty good at portraying a bad guy and wouldn’t mind more chances to do it again. He has often implied that he doesn’t find the thought processes of criminals and villains so wholly alien to him that he could not act them out.
But shortly afterward, Hollywood began typecasting Freeman as a saint and even as a Manifestation of the Divine Godhead.
This led to some incongruities, such as when a car crash led to the revelation of Freeman’s Woody Allen-like affair with his, IIRC, step-granddaughter.
In general, most people who become successful acting stars have an above-average abundance of sexual energy — that’s a sizable part of what we the public respond to in them — along with more opportunities to indulge those energies. So it’s not always a prudent idea to saddle actors with sanctimonious images, such as the Numinous Negro one bestowed upon Freeman.