Hollywood Foreign Press Association Investigating Brendan Fraser’s Grope Claims

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February 23, 2018 | 7:25am EST

Officials at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) are investigating claims Brendan Fraser was groped by its former president Philip Berk.
In a new GQ magazine profile published on Thursday, The Mummy star said he was groped by Berk at a HFPA luncheon in the summer of 2003. He also added that he asked the HFPA, who organize the Golden Globes, for a written apology, which they gave him, but he fears they have blacklisted him since.
It was the first time Fraser had spoken publicly about the incident which Berk had recalled in his memoir, although he said he jokingly pinched the actor’s butt. Berk denied Fraser’s account of the incident, calling it a “total fabrication”, but HFPA officials declined to comment to GQ.
They have since issued a statement to Us Weekly, saying they are investigating the allegation, and denying the actor’s claims that he had barely been invited to the Golden Globes since 2003.
“The HFPA stands firmly against sexual harassment and the type of behavior described in this article,” the statement read. “Over the years we’ve continued a positive working relationship with Brendan, which includes announcing Golden Globe nominees, attending the ceremony and participating in press conferences. This report includes alleged information that the HFPA was previously unaware of and at this time we are investigating further details surrounding the incident.”
The George of the Jungle star told GQ: “His left hand reaches around, grabs my ass cheek, and one of his fingers touches me in the taint. And he starts moving it around… I felt ill. I felt like a little kid. I felt like there was a ball in my throat. I thought I was going to cry.”
He removed Berk’s hand and rushed out of the room. He said he became depressed and reclusive and retreated from the spotlight as a consequence.
Berk said he wrote an apology to Fraser but avoided admitting to any wrongdoing. He also denied the HFPA blacklisted Fraser, adding, “His career declined through no fault of ours.”

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