Another co-star of comedian Chris D’Elia has spoken out about recent allegations that the comic solicited underage girls on social media.
D’Elia had a three-episode arc on the Netflix series You last season, playing a man who menaces a 15-year-old girl.
You star Penn Badgley addressed the allegations in a podcast with the L.A. Times. D’Elia’s character Henderson was killed off and won’t be appearing in Season 3 of the show.
“It did affect me deeply,” said Badgley about the news. “I was very troubled by it.”
“I don’t know Chris,” he continued. “I know that, if there’s anything we need to do in this age, it’s to believe women.”
Badgley revealed that the show’s brass was first and foremost concerned for the young actress who played the girl menaced by D’Elia’s character.
“You know,” said Badgley, “the first thing our producers did was reach out to Jenna [Ortega], who played Ellie, the girl opposite Chris in those scenes, just to make sure she felt safe.”
“I would hope that at least our show is not serving to uphold these kind of, like, bunk ways of being and these systems,” said the actor. “So, you know, that’s as much as I think I can and should say, you know?”
D’Elia has denied allegations that he harassed teen girls online.
“I know I have said and done things that might have offended people during my career, but I have never knowingly pursued any underage women at any point,” D’Elia said in a statement obtained by Deadline last week. “All of my relationships have been both legal and consensual and I have never met or exchanged any inappropriate photos with the people who have tweeted about me. That being said, I really am truly sorry. I was a dumb guy who ABSOLUTELY let myself get caught up in my lifestyle. That’s MY fault. I own it. I’ve been reflecting on this for some time now and I promise I will continue to do better.”
Badgley said he was disturbed that a show like You would even indirectly support abuse.
“I also am thinking about how to somehow not — the idea that a show like ours would indirectly, unwittingly be a haven for people who are abusive is disturbing. It’s very disturbing,” he went on. “What does it take to change that? Because it’s not just vetting individuals. There needs to be a change in culture and attitude so that that kind of behavior is so clearly reprehensible, it’s so clearly, like, anti-human.”
Whitney Cummings, D’Elia’s co-star on her NBC comedy series Whitney, said that she was “devastated and enraged by what I’ve read and learned.”
“This is a pattern of predatory behavior,” Cummings wrote. “This abuse of power is enabled by silence. Now that I’m aware, I won’t be silent.”
Comedy Central, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video all removed an episode of the series Workaholics which features Chris D’Elia as a child molester.
CAA has dropped the actor. He also has been let go by management company 3 Arts Entertainment.
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