They may have had a profitable and successful professional partnership over the years. Projects like Pineapple Express, The Interview, Sausage Party and This Is the End were rounded out by cameos in movies like The Night Before, The Green Hornet, and Knocked Up.
However, the past means nothing when the mob descends. Hollywood politics are such that you must renounce sinners, and rumored sinners, distancing yourself.
And so Seth Rogen has moved to put distance between himself and his former long-time collaborator James Franco, following allegations against Franco of sexually inappropriate behavior.
In an interview with The Sunday Times, Rogen addressed the allegations, and also said he regretted his choice of humor when hosting Saturday Night Live back in 2014. This will go down well as if there is one thing the new Hollywood religion loves even more than a good, hard renouncing then it’s a bit of self-flagellation.
Rogen said to the newspaper:
“What I can say is that I despise abuse and harassment and I would never cover or conceal the actions of someone doing it, or knowingly put someone in a situation where they were around someone like that. However, I do look back at a joke I made on ‘Saturday Night Live’ in 2014 and I very much regret making that joke. It was a terrible joke, honestly.”
Allegations of sexual misconduct stem from 2018, when numerous complaints were made by students at his former acting school. They accused him of intimidating them into sexual situations. Franco strenuously denied these allegations. A lawsuit was settled.
In an interview back then Rogen said he would continue to work with Franco, now he has backtracked.
“…the truth is that I have not and I do not plan to right now.”
He goes on to say that it is not a coincidence that things have changed between them:
“I don’t know if I can define that right now during this interview. I can say it, um, you know, it has changed many things in our relationship and our dynamic.”
When asked if this was difficult for him, he went on to say:
“Yeah. But not as painful and difficult as it is for a lot of other people involved. I have no pity for myself in this situation.”
So Franco canceled, Rogen a survivor through self-preservation. The Hollywood machine rolls ever onward.