Morgan Freeman 'devastated' that sexual harassment claims could undermine legacy

Actor Morgan Freeman spoke out again in the wake of sexual harassment allegations against him, saying Friday that he was “devastated” by the turn of events.

Several women accused the Oscar winner of inappropriate behavior, including lewd comments and unwanted touching, according to a CNN investigation.

I am devastated that 80 years of my life is at risk of being undermined, in the blink of an eye, by Thursday’s media reports,” Morgan said in a statement, per outlets. “All victims of assault and harassment deserve to be heard. And we need to listen to them. But it is not right to equate horrific incidents of sexual assault with misplaced compliments or humor.”

Credit card company Visa and Vancouver transportation company TransLink (in a Visa promotion) suspended campaigns featuring Freeman after the accusations surfaced.

Morgan Freeman through the years
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Morgan Freeman through the years
Publicity still of American actor Morgan Freeman in the PBS TV series 'The Electric Company,' 1971. (Photo by John D. Kisch/Separate Cinema Archive/Getty Images)
L-R Morgan Freeman , James Lipton at Mighty Gents Broadway opening party April 12 1978 (Photo by Bobby Bank/WireImage)
ATTICA - TV Movie - Airdate: March 2, 1980. (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images) MORGAN FREEMAN
ABC MOVIE FOR TV - 'Attica' - Airdate: March 2, 1980. (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images) MORGAN FREEMAN;DAVID HARRIS;EXTRAS
From left, American actress Dana Ivey, Canadian-born actress Fay Wray (1907 - 2004), and American actor Morgan Freeman share a laugh backstage at the John Houseman Theatre (West 42nd Street) after a performance of the play 'Driving Miss Daisy,' starring both Ivey and Freeeman, New York, New York, Novemeber 1987. (Photo by Tom Gates/Pictorial Parade/Getty Images)
Morgan Freeman (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 01: Joseph L. Brooks, Morgan Freeman & Jack Nicholson (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
Morgan Freeman and Dana Ivey in costume for the hit play 'Driving Miss Daisy' in June 1987. (Photo by Jack Mitchell/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 01: Joseph L. Brooks, Morgan Freeman & Jack Nicholson (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
Morgan Freeman (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 10: (ITALY OUT, NEWSDAY OUT, NY DAILY NEWS OUT) Actors Morgan Freeman and James Earl Jones pose together outside of the John Golden Theater on February 10, 2011 in New York City. Morgan Freeman played Hoke Colburn in the 1989 film adaptation of 'Driving Miss Daisy', while James Earl Jones currently plays Hoke Colburn in the revival of the play 'Driving Miss Daisy'. (Photo by Arnaldo Magnani/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - MARCH 04: Actors Morgan Freeman (left) and Jessica Tandy. They starred together in the 1989 movie, 'Driving Miss Daisy.' (Photo by Richard Corkery/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
CANADA - SEPTEMBER 12: Morgan Freeman: Busy actor; photographed at the Toronto film festival; appears in Johnny Handsome and will star in the movie version of Driving Miss Daisy. (Photo by Erin Combs/Toronto Star via Getty Images)
Actress Jessica Tandy and Actor Morgan Freeman attend the 27th Annual Publicists Guild of America Awards on March 23, 1990 at Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
Actor Morgan Freeman listening as guest of Congressional Arts Caucaus luncheon re: NEA grant denials to artists deemed obscene. (Photo by Robert Sherbow/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images)
Tyne Daly and Morgan Freeman (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
Morgan Freeman stands with Joe Clark, who he portrays in the film 'Lean On Me', 1989. (Photo by Warner Brothers/Getty Images)
Actor Morgan Freeman holding gun during rehearsals for play. (Photo by Time Life Pictures/DMI/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
Morgan Freeman during 43rd Annual Writers Guild of America Awards at Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
US actor Morgan Freeman poses during a photocall for the premiere of Clint Eastwood's film 'Invictus' in Madrid, on January 27, 2010. The Clint Eastwood film 'Invictus', about South Africa's 1995 Rugby World Cup victory, stars Morgan Freeman playing Mandela. AFP PHOTO/JAVIER SORIANO. (Photo credit should read JAVIER SORIANO/AFP/Getty Images)
Morgan Freeman during 'Deep Impact' Hollywood Premiere at Paramount Studios in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Sam Levi/WireImage)
377825 01: UNDATED FILE PHOTO: Morgan Freeman. (photo by Newsmakers)
MADRID, SPAIN - JULY 26: Actor Morgan Freeman attends a photocall for the Spanish premiere of the movie ?The Sum of All Fears? July 26, 2002 at the Hotel Ritz in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/ Getty Images)
Dubai, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: US actor Morgan Freeman speaks during as press conference 15 December 2005 in Dubai, on the sidelines of the Gulf emirate's international film festival. Freeman talked about his new film with Kevin Spacey and Justin Timberlake, 'Edison', directed by David J. Burke. AFP PHOTO/NASSER YOUNES (Photo credit should read NASSER YOUNES/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - MARCH 05: Actor Morgan Freeman attends the New York premiere of 'Married Life' presented by The Cinema Society at the Tribeca Cinemas on March 5, 2007 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)
TODAY -- Pictured: (l-r) Michael Douglas and Morgan Freeman appear on NBC News' 'Today' show -- (Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images)
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - DECEMBER 08: (SOUTH AFRICA, UAE, BRAZIL OUT) Actor Morgan Freeman poses for photographers during a media conference in Johannesburg on Tuesday, 8 December 2009 in Johhansburgh. Journalists were kept waiting for Freeman as he first went to suprise former president Nelson Mandela with a surprise visit. Freeman is currently in South Africa for the premier of the Hollywood movie 'Invictus' which is based on the 1995 Rugby World Cup in which Freeman plays former president Nelson Mandela. Freeman told the media that he?s been ready to play Mandela since the nineties, all he was waiting for was the right project. When asked if he was born to play the role of Mandela, he answered that he was born to act. (Photo by Foto24/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

In the CNN report, one unidentified woman who worked on the film “Going in Style” in 2015 accused Freeman of repeatedly trying to lift up her skirt and asking her if she was wearing underwear.

Freeman initially apologized for unintentionally making anyone feel uncomfortable or disrespected and reiterated those sentiments in part of his statement on Friday.

But, he added, “I also want to be clear: I did not create unsafe work environments. I did not assault women. I did not offer employment or advancement in exchange for sex. Any suggestion that I did so is completely false.”

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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