Jeffrey Tambor has been dropped from Emmy-winning Amazon comedy drama Transparent after sexual harassment allegations.
The decision was confirmed by Amazon on Thursday after a recent investigation was concluded. The actor, who played transgender matriarch Maura Pfefferman in the show, was accused of misconduct by co-star Trace Lysette in November.
“He came in close, put his bare feet on top of mine so I could not move, leaned his body against me, and began quick, discreet thrust back and forth against my body” Lysette said in a statement on Twitter. “I felt his penis on my hip through his thin pyjamas.”
The allegations came after Tambor’s assistant Van Barnes claimed he had propositioned her, made lewd comments, groped her and threatened her if she shared her story.
After Lysette came forward, Tambor apologized but denied wrongdoing. “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,” he said. “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.”
In a second statement, he claimed it would be difficult to return to the set due to the “politicized atmosphere” that had “afflicted” the set.
Amazon has now decided not to renew his contract for the show’s fifth season. His fellow cast members, including Judith Light and Jay Duplass, are all confirmed to return. It’s not yet clear if it will be the show’s final season.
“We are grateful to the many trans people who have supported our vision for Transparent since its inception and remain heartbroken about the pain and mistrust their experience has generated in our community,” the show’s creator Jill Solloway said. “We are taking definitive action to ensure our workplace respects the safety and dignity of every individual, and are taking steps to heal as a family.”
The role brought Tambor two Emmys and a Golden Globe.