Jeffrey Tambor, the star of Amazon’s hugely successful series Transparent, has now been accused of sexual harassment by two transgender women who work on the show.
Most recently, actress Trace Lysette says that Tambor made inappropriate comments toward her and approached her physically in a sexually aggressive way. (Read her full statement here.) Tambor’s former assistant, Van Barnes, has also come forward about Tambor sexually harassing her.
Amazon opened an investigation when Barnes reported Tambor last week. Lysette has suggested that Amazon “remove the problem and let the show go on.” And Tambor vehemently denied Barnes’ allegations.
“For the past four years, I’ve had the huge privilege — and huge responsibility – of playing Maura Pfefferman, a transgender woman, in a show that I know has had an enormous, positive impact on a community that has been too long dismissed and misunderstood,” Tambor said Thursday. “Now I find myself accused of behavior that any civilized person would condemn unreservedly.”
He added: “I know I haven’t always been the easiest person to work with. I can be volatile and ill-tempered, and too often I express my opinions harshly and without tact. But I have never been a predator – ever. I am deeply sorry if any action of mine was ever misinterpreted by anyone as being sexually aggressive or if I ever offended or hurt anyone. But the fact is, for all my flaws, I am not a predator and the idea that someone might see me in that way is more distressing than I can express.”
Damn. Sending strength and love to Trace and Van for speaking up; we cannot let this slide and continue to pretend there’s not a systemic problem here.