NEW YORK — With his career imploding over allegations of sexual misconduct, comedian Louis C.K. confessed Friday to masturbating in front of women and expressed remorse for wielding his influence “irresponsibly.”
The comedian said in a statement that the harassment claims by five women detailed in a Thursday New York Times report “are true.”
“I can hardly wrap my head around the scope of hurt I brought on them,” he said.
“There is nothing about this that I forgive myself for,” he wrote. “And I have to reconcile it with who I am. Which is nothing compared to the task I left them with.”
He apologized to the cast and crew of several projects he’s been working on, his family, children and friends, his manager and the FX network, among others.
The 438-word statement ends with the comedian vowing to stop talking and leave the spotlight, stating, “I will now step back and take a long time to listen.”
The comedian stepped forward on the same day indie distributor The Orchard said it will scrap the release of C.K.’s film “I Love You, Daddy.” C.K. has already been edited out of the upcoming HBO benefit “Night of Too Many Stars” and his work is being scrubbed from the cable network’s vaults.
More fallout came Friday when Netflix said it will not produce a second planned standup special starring the comedian, citing his “unprofessional and inappropriate behavior.” He had been tapped for two specials, with the first airing in April. At least five of the comedian’s stand-up specials remain on Netflix.
In a further blow, FX Networks and FX Productions said they are ending their association with C.K., which means cancellation of a deal with his production company, Pig Newton, and removing him as executive producer on the four shows FX is making with him.