Sky cancels Bulletproof after over 20 women accused star Noel Clarke of sexual harassment and bullying
- In a statement to MailOnline on Friday, a spokesperson said: ‘Sky will not be proceeding with any further series of Bulletproof’
- Sky had previously commissioned a fourth season earlier this year, Clarke co-created and starred in the crime drama
- Over 20 women have accused Clarke of sexual harassment, groping and bullying
- Clarke has said he ‘vehemently denies’ sexual misconduct or criminal behaviour
- The actor was suspended from Bafta following the allegations
- Bulletproof actor Ashley Walters recently said he was ‘deeply saddened’ by the allegations made against Clarke in a lengthy statement posted to Twitter
Sky has cancelled ‘Bulletproof’ after Noel Clarke was accused of sexual misconduct, it was revealed on Friday.
The broadcaster has decided to axe the show – which the actor, 45, co-created and starred in – having previously commissioned a fourth season earlier this year, after over 20 women accused him of sexual harassment and bullying.
In a statement to MailOnline, a spokesperson said: ‘Sky will not be proceeding with any further series of Bulletproof. ‘
Decision: Sky cancelled Bulletproof on Friday after over 20 women accused star Noel Clarke of sexual harassment and bullying (Clarke pictured right with co-star Ashley Walters)
20 women accused him of sexual harassment, groping and bullying, with the claims levelled against him in The Guardian, with seven more women coming forward to do the same after the first report was published.
He has been accused of a range of inappropriate activities, including sexual harassment, unwanted touching or groping, sexually inappropriate behaviour and comments on set, professional misconduct, taking and sharing sexually explicit pictures and videos without consent, and bullying.
The actor has vehemently denied claims by women who accuse him of sexual harassment, groping and bullying between 2004 and 2019.
In his own statement, he said: ‘In a 20-year career, I have put inclusivity and diversity at the forefront of my work and never had a complaint made against me.
Allegations: 20 women have accused him of sexual harassment, groping and bullying, with the claims levelled against him in The Guardian (pictured in 2019)
‘If anyone who has worked with me has ever felt uncomfortable or disrespected, I sincerely apologise.
‘I vehemently deny any sexual misconduct or wrongdoing and intend to defend myself against these false allegations.’
The Guardian also reported Clarke categorically denied every allegation made against him with the exception of one, where he admitted he once made inappropriate comments about one woman, for which he later apologised.
According to the publication, his lawyers wrote a 29-page letter in which they said Clarke denies all of the other allegations from all 20 women.
Denial: Noel vehemently denied the allegations in a statement to the newspaper (pictured with his wife Iris Da Silva in February 2017)
Earlier this month it was reported Noel is facing the prospect of a police investigation after seven more women came forward to accuse him of a campaign of sexual harassment and bullying.
With 27 women now saying they were sexually harassed or groped by the celebrated actor and director, Scotland Yard has said it is ‘assessing’ a specific allegation.
The Met Police confirmed that a ‘third-party report’ was made on April 21 ‘relating to allegations of sexual offences committed by a male over a period of time’.
A third party report is when claims are made to an organisation separate from the police. This type of report is anonymous and means the claims cannot be probed by officers but can be used as intelligence.
Case: Earlier this month it was reported Noel is facing the prospect of a police investigation after seven more women came forward to accuse him of sexual harassment and bullying
A spokesman said no criminal investigation had been launched but that officers are ‘currently assessing the information’.
They added: ‘We would urge anyone who believes they have been subjected to a sexual offence to report this to police so the information can be assessed and investigated accordingly.’
Meanwhile, it was reported that Bafta spent two weeks deciding how best to respond to allegations against Clarke prior to presenting him with one of its highest honours, the Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema Award.
The father-of-three was suspended from Bafta following the allegations, and at the time Sky took the decision to ‘halt’ filming of the latest series of his east London crime drama Bulletproof.
Response: Bulletproof actor Ashley Walters (L) recently said he was ‘deeply saddened’ by the allegations made against Clarke in a lengthy statement posted to Twitter
New details emerged this month of unscheduled acting workshops held by Clarke at the London School of Dramatic Art.
Jake Taylor, the school’s principal, said Clarke joined the board in 2011 in an advisory role and would hold question-and-answer sessions for students. He added: ‘It came to our attention that on one occasion he took it upon himself to turn one of these Q&A sessions into a practical acting workshop.
‘We were informed that in this unsanctioned class he set up improvisation exercises in which students were told they had to get undressed and get ready for bed.
‘Our response was to no longer schedule Noel to take unsupervised sessions with immediate effect.’
Statement: Ashley wrote, ‘I could never condone behaviour of this nature in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore this allegations’
In a statement, Mr Taylor said that fresh details in recent days about the session and another previously unknown workshop by Clarke ‘has shocked us’.
‘Had we known about these details at the time we would have ended the professional relationship between Noel and our school with immediate effect,’ he added.
Clarke’s lawyers have denied that the London School of Dramatic Arts asked him to stop giving classes – saying that Clarke’s workshop, called Facing\Your Fears was aimed at helping students with anxieties over performing as actors.
Meanwhile, one of Clarke’s co-stars has described the allegations against him as the ‘UK film industry’s best kept secret for years’. Christina Chong, who appeared opposite Clarke in the first series of police drama Bulletproof, posted on Twitter: ‘If in doubt, trust me, it’s true… He’s a sexual predator.’
Shock: The father-of-three was suspended from Bafta following the allegations (Pictured on April 10 with his Bafta Award)
Actress Jahannah James, who appeared in the film Brotherhood, which was directed by and starred Clarke, says she was forced to audition nude for him in 2013, and claims she later discovered he had covertly filmed it.
Clarke’s Kidulthood co-star Jaime Winstone also broke her silence to throw her support behind the disgraced actor’s accusers in a poignant Time’s Up post.
The actress, 35, who appeared opposite the actor in the 2006 film as Becky, shared the image on Instagram alongside a caption saying: ‘When you’re late to the party but you’ve been on the list for 15 years.’
Earlier, Bulletproof actor Ashley Walters said he was ‘deeply saddened’ by the allegations made against Clarke in a lengthy statement posted to Twitter.
He added: ‘My thoughts are with the women who have come forward and told their awful stories, I am in shock and deeply saddened by what I have heard on a multitude of levels.
‘I could never condone behaviour of this nature in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore this allegations.
Noel Clarke: The Rags to riches Kidulthood star from Ladbrooke Grove who had ‘no choice’ but to write his own roles after realising he’d never land the jobs he wanted as a black actor
From 2006-2016 Noel wrote, directed and starred in the trilogy of films Kidulthood, Adulthood and Brotherhood
Noel Clarke always felt an outsider in the British film industry, claiming he wasn’t ever welcomed.
But just last month he was welcomed by Bafta and handed a Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema in London on April 10.
Clarke lives in the capital with his wife, former make-up artist Iris Da Silva, and their three children with an estimated fortune of £3million.
Noel rose to fame with the The Hood Trilogy, semi-biographical films about life in West London where he grew up.
He said recently that he had to write his own roles after realising he’d never land the jobs he wanted as a black actor
From 2006-2016 Noel wrote, directed and starred in the acclaimed trilogy of films Kidulthood, Adulthood and Brotherhood.
The well-received movies follow a group of teenagers as they navigate life outside the law in Ladbroke Grove, West London.
Noel told Interview magazine: ‘I grew up in Ladbroke Grove… which sounds really glamorous now, but at the time it wasn’t very glamorous.’
‘In the ’60s and late ’50s, it was a place where they shoved a lot of the black people that were coming over.’
And, in 2007, Noel set up his own production company Unstoppable Entertainment to try and promote more diversity in the film and TV industry.
He started the venture with his fellow actor Jason Maza, 33, who he later collaborated with on the next series he wrote – Bulletproof, which starred himself and Ashley Walters.
The pair originally struggled to get the show commissioned and Noel told Sky News at the time he didn’t ‘think the country was ready’ for their positive depiction of two black lead characters.
Noel recently accepted his BAFTA Award after being praised for his TV show Bulletproof and the film series Kidulthood which sees black working class characters take centre stage.
The former Doctor Who star’s prize came after he received the Rising Star Award in 2009.
Despite his huge success, with his ITV series Viewpoint set to begin later this month, Noel said he still feels like an outsider in the industry.
‘Sexual harassment, abuse, and bullying have no place in our industry.
‘Every woman has the right to a safe workplace and moving forward I pledge my dedication to this.’
Walters has starred as Ronnie Pike in all three seasons of Bulletproof, an east London crime drama.
This month, Clarke was at the centre of further allegations he sexually harassed or touched others on BBC hit Doctor Who.
The broadcaster appeared to be broadsided by the new reports today and said it would investigate specific claims made but was ‘shocked’ to hear of them.
Clarke is said to have told one costume assistant, who had long hair, working on series one of the rebooted sci-fi show he ‘liked girls with long hair’ so he could hold onto it when in a specific sexual position.
Another female runner and driver on the show alleges Clarke touched her inappropriately and repeatedly asked her to go to his hotel for sex.
She told the Guardian she pleaded to the assistant director: ‘I can’t drive him anymore. I don’t want to be on my own with him.’
Clarke denies any allegations of sexual misconduct, criminal wrongdoing or sexually inappropriate behaviour, including the latest accusations.
The allegations surfaced after Clarke received an ‘outstanding contribution’ award from Bafta last month in recognition of his glittering career writing, directing and starring in critically acclaimed films such as Kidulthood, Adulthood and Brotherhood. He also starred as Mickey Smith in Doctor Who between 2005 and 2010.
The Guardian newspaper reported that three senior industry figures had tipped off Bafta about the claims almost two weeks before the ceremony.
In a statement, Bafta claimed it had acted ‘as quickly and supportively as we could, even though we had only received the most generic of claims and no actual first-hand information to investigate allegations which were potentially of a criminal nature’.
The Guardian said senior figures within the film academy were worried about the potential reputational damage to the organisation over its handling of the claims against Clarke.
Bafta chair Krishnendu Majumdar was reportedly aware there could be as many as 12 women making allegations against Clarke on the eve of the awards ceremony.
He sought to speak to anyone with first-hand experience of Clarke’s alleged misconduct and told an industry figure he was ‘trying to do something about’ the situation as it could ‘destroy’ Bafta ‘in the court of public opinion’, the newspaper said.
Majumdar is said to have described the allegations as a ‘desperately difficult situation for us’ as Bafta ‘cannot act as judge and jury’.
He also hosted a Zoom call with figures including Bafta chief executive Amanda Berry to discuss how to respond to the allegations, The Guardian said. Bafta has said it will not comment on the latest claims in The Guardian.
However, some suggested the allegations had become a witch-hunt, which undermined the principle of innocent until proven guilty.
One leading British actress told this newspaper: ‘It is an hysterical, prurient, over-reaction – all-too typical of the witch-burning climate we live in since the mobs on social media began to dictate the rule of law.’
She added: ‘The rule of law applies. Clarke denies all charges and has not yet been proved guilty.
‘When you ‘no platform’ an entire production because of an alleged crime, you are punishing hundreds of innocent creatives for the as-yet- unproven misdemeanours of one member. Writer, actors, crews and the public lose their rights.’
Clarke has said he’s ‘deeply sorry’ for some of his actions.
He added: ‘I vehemently deny any sexual misconduct or criminal wrongdoing. Recent reports, however, have made it clear to me that some of my actions have affected people in ways I did not intend or realise. To those individuals, I am deeply sorry. I will be seeking professional help to educate myself and change for the better.’
Accusations: This month, Clarke was at the centre of further allegations he sexually harassed or touched others on Doctor Who (pictured on show with David Tennant and Billie Piper)
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