Brow Beat

Alison Brie Stuck to the Franco Line When Asked About Allegations Against Her Brother-in-Law James

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21:  Actor Alison Brie attends the 24th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. 27522_011  (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Turner Image)
Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

Alison Brie was asked about sexual misconduct allegations against her brother-in-law James Franco at the SAG Awards on Sunday night, and her response was remarkably similar to the one James himself gave Stephen Colbert. Brie, who is married to James’ brother and Disaster Artist co-star Dave Franco, reaffirmed her support for the movement, telling E!’s Giuliana Rancic that anyone who feels victimized should have the right to come forward, while adding that claims against James weren’t fully accurate.

“I think that, above all, what we’ve always said is it remains vital that anyone that feels victimized should and does have the right to speak out and come forward,” she said. “I obviously support my family and not everything that has been reported is fully accurate, so I think we’re waiting to get all the information. But of course, now is the time for listening and that’s what we’re all trying to do.”

As Franco told Colbert, “The things that I heard that were on Twitter are not accurate. But I completely support people coming out and being able to have a voice … I don’t want to shut them down in any way. I think it’s a good thing, and it’s important.”

Franco—who skipped last week’s Critics’ Choice Awards following the quintet of #MeToos against him—made an appearance at the SAG awards ceremony, but did not walk the red carpet, leaving it up to his famous family to answer to the reports. Brie finds herself in an uncomfortable position, as a supporter of both the Time’s Up movement and the Franco family.

E! is not exactly known for its woke red carpet coverage—it’s been called out in the past few weeks by both actresses (over gender pay inequity) and journalists (over insensitive questioning)—and some have blamed E! for asking the Glow star to answer for her husband’s brother’s crimes. But Rancic’s questioning was about transparency, not blame. As an open supporter of the movement, it matters how Brie handles allegations against members of her own family, much as it matters when Lena Dunham decries rape but then denies rape when her own friends are accused, much as it matters that we all maintain consistent standards when it comes to our friends, family, and celebrity favorites, lest the popular and connected be allowed to weather allegations unscathed.

As Brie said, now is the time for listening. It will be interesting if there are any more stories to listen to if Franco is nominated for an Oscar on Tuesday morning.