U.S. comedian Louis C.K. has admitted to sexually harassing five women, who came forward with allegations in a New York Times report.
"These stories are true," Louis C.K. said Friday, according to a statement circulating on Twitter. "There is nothing about this that I forgive myself for. And I have to reconcile it with who I am."
The Times published accusations from the women saying that the award-winning comic masturbated or asked to masturbate in front of them or on the telephone in separate incidents dating from the late 1990s to 2005.
"At the time, I said to myself that what I did was OK because I never showed a woman my dick without asking first, which is also true," said C.K. in the statement.
"But what I learned later in life, too late, is that when you have power over another person, asking them to look at your dick isn't a question. It's a predicament for them. The power I had over these women is that they admired me.
"And I wielded that power irresponsibly," he said.
On Thursday, the premiere of his new movie "I Love You, Daddy," was abruptly canceled, and the award-winner canceled an appearance on CBS comedy chat show "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert," the Times reported.
The comedian's accusers told the paper that his behavior was abusive.
On Friday, C.K. said there was "nothing about this that I forgive myself for" and claimed he could "hardly wrap my head around the scope of hurt I brought" on the women and colleagues with whom he has worked, now impacted by the scandal.
"I've brought pain to my family, my friends, my children and their mother," he said.
"I have spent my long and lucky career talking and saying anything I want," Louis C.K. said. "I will now step back and take a long time to listen."
The online streaming service Netflix said Friday it is axing plans for a comedy special with the comedian and The Orchard, an entertainment company, halted the release of his latest movie after the allegations.
"The allegations made by several women in The New York Times about Louis C.K.'s behavior are disturbing," a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement provided to dpa.
"Louis's unprofessional and inappropriate behavior with female colleagues has led us to decide not to produce a second stand-up special, as had been planned," the spokesperson said. The company did not have any other projects planned with CK, according to the spokesperson
The release of his upcoming movie has been stopped according to media reports on Friday.
"The Orchard will not be moving forward with the release of 'I Love You, Daddy,'" The Orchard said in a statement provided to CNN.
The movie, directed and written by and starring Louis C.K., follows a TV writer whose teenage daughter becomes the interest of an ageing filmmaker.
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