After being accused of sexual harassment by a former assistant and co-star, Emmy winner Jeffrey Tambor has quit Transparent, the groundbreaking Amazon series about an older trans woman’s journey to self-discovery.
“Playing Maura Pfefferman on Transparent has been one of the greatest privileges and creative experiences of my life,” Tambor said in a statement to Deadline. “What has become clear over the past weeks, however, is that this is no longer the job I signed up for four years ago.”
“I’ve already made clear my deep regret if any action of mine was ever misinterpreted by anyone as being aggressive,” he added, “but the idea that I would deliberately harass anyone is simply and utterly untrue. Given the politicized atmosphere that seems to have afflicted our set, I don’t see how I can return to Transparent.”
Earlier this month, Van Barnes accused Tambor of groping her and making lewd comments while she was his assistant, prompting Amazon to launch an investigation.
Last week, Transparent co-star Trace Lysette (above) claimed Tambor made inappropriate comments and cornered her on set, pressing his crotch against her leg. Tambor has denied both women’s claims, insisting that while “I haven’t always been the easiest person to work with… I have never been a predator—ever.”
In her tweet, Lysette said she hoped Amazon “can find the good in this,” and “re-center the other trans characters in this show with the family members instead of just pulling [the show.] Let our brilliant writers continue to craft something that is entertaining and creates a social change the way they know how. Don’t let the trans community suffer for the actions of one cis male actor.
A fifth season of Arrested Development, starring Tambor as philandering patriarch George Bluth Sr., just finished production and is still on target for a 2018 release on Netflix.