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The Noel Clarke fallout continues to grow in the U.K. and has now dragged in the BBC, with new claims of sexual harassment made against the embattled Brit actor and writer from the set of one of the broadcaster’s flagship shows.
According to The Guardian — which wrote the original exposé last week in which 20 women came forward to accuse Clarke of groping, sexual misconduct and bullying, leading to ITV, Sky and CAA announcing they had cut ties with the actor and BAFTA rescinding a recent award — new sources have alleged that they were “sexual harassed or inappropriately” touched on the set of Doctor Who.
Clarke — who in a statement following the original report said he “vehemently” denied allegations of sexual misconduct or criminal wrongdoing — played Mickey Smith on the cult sci-fi series from 2005 and 2010, making him a well-known name on British TV.
Speaking to The Guardian, Joanne Hayes — a costume assistant on the first season of the newly revived Doctor Who, which was shot in 2004 — claims that Clarke sexually harassed her in his trailer, referencing how he “liked girls with long hair, as it gave him something to hold on to when doing them from behind” (Hayes had very long hair at the time), something Clarke’s lawyers have denied and said did not take place.
Another unnamed woman — a runner and driver on Doctor Who around the same time — says that Clarke touched her inappropriately while she was driving him to and from set, telling The Guardian that the actor repeatedly asked her to go to his hotel room for sex. She added that she complained to an assistant director and was put on different duties. Clarke has strongly denied the allegations, while lawyers said Clarke wouldn’t be allowed to have behaved that way and that Clarke was not aware of any complaint made against him at any time.
A third woman and former runner alleges that Clarke sexually harassed her and another female co-worker at a hotel bar in the mid-2000s, and when they rejected his advances, he became “rude” and “aggressive,” later spreading false rumors about them on set. Clarke strongly denied the allegations, with lawyers saying he wouldn’t have had any reason to be in the hotel bar because he doesn’t drink.
The latest Guardian exposé also draws in John Barrowman, who played Jack Harness in both Doctor Who and its spinoff, Torchwood. Barrowman has been accused of “exposing himself repeatedly” on both sets, although the reports highlight how many witnesses described the incidents as “inappropriate pranks” rather than predatory behavior. The accusations back up a recently resurfaced video from a 2015 sci-fi convention in Chicago in which Clarke describes how his former co-star was “taking his dick out every five seconds” and would “slap” it on colleagues.
Julie Gardner, who was executive producer at the time, confirmed that she received a complaint and “reprimanded” Barrowman, but added that she was not aware of any misconduct by Clarke.
“I am saddened and shocked by the accusations raised,” she told The Guardian. “If I had known of them there would have been prompt action taken. I am grateful that people are coming forward to speak up and support them wholeheartedly.”
Russell T. Davies — the It’s a Sin and Years and Years creator who helped revive Doctor Who — added that he never witnessed Barrowman exposing himself or was aware of any complaints against Clarke. “I apologize wholeheartedly to any cast or crew who went through this,” he said. “All power to those coming forward now — we will listen to them, and learn.”
Barrowman, speaking to The Guardian, admitted to “tomfoolery” but said it was never intended or interpreted as sexual in nature.
In a statement sent to The Hollywood Reporter, a BBC spokesperson claimed the broadcaster was “against all forms of inappropriate behaviour” and “shocked” to hear of these latest allegations.
“To be absolutely clear, we will investigate any specific allegations made by individuals to the BBC — and if anyone has been subjected to or witnessed inappropriate behaviour of any kind we would encourage them to raise it with us directly,” read the statement. “We have a zero-tolerance approach and robust processes are in place — which are regularly reviewed and updated to reflect best practice — to ensure any complaints or concerns are handled with the utmost seriousness and care.”
The latest report comes just a day after more than 900 members of the U.K.’s entertainment industry — including actor Jim Sturgess and former Channel 4 commissioner Kelly Webb-Lamb, signed an open letter calling for “an end to this culture that turns a blind eye to predators and harassers operating in plain sight.”
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