Bryan Callen Taking a 'Leave of Absence' From His Podcast Following Sexual Misconduct Allegations
By Zach Seemayer
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Bryan Callen is standing by his staunch denial of recently leveled allegations of sexual misconduct. The Goldbergs actor took to Instagram on Sunday to share an impassioned video addressing and once again denying the accusations. He also revealed that he will be stepping back from his popular podcast.
According to a Los Angeles Times article, published on Friday, four women have gone on the record to share their alleged stories of the 53-year-old comedian acting inappropriately towards them. The allegations, all of which Callen vehemently denies, date back to 1999.
Callen -- who previously released a lengthy denial to the press in which he addressed the allegations directly -- was expected to talk about the accusations in detail on his podcast, The Fighter and The Kid. However, he decided to share a new statement to Instagram instead.
Callen doubled down in the video he shared on Sunday, in which he also explained why he was choosing to do more than release a statement.
"When you're in a situation like I am, you get a lot of advice from a lot of different people, and it usually falls into two different categories. They either tell you to post a statement and disappear or they say to lay low and let the news cycle pass you by," Callen said. "Well, for better or for worse, I'm not doing any of that."
The actor and comedian continued, "I never thought in a million years I would be sitting here defending myself against something I did not do 21 years ago."
"I categorically and absolutely deny all the allegations against me," Callen added. "I wanted you to see me say that, I didn't want to post some stale statement. I wanted you to hear that come out of my mouth."
Callen argued that the way he has been characterized in the report doesn't resemble the person his friends, fans and family know him to be.
"Those are not things that I could do, those are not things that I would ever do. That is not how I have ever lived my life," Callen stated.
The actor went on to stress that his video was "not a video about cancel culture" or about demonizing the #MeToo Movement. Callen said he believes "the #MeToo movement is one of the most important movements of my lifetime, because of the first time in history it gives women recourse against the abuse of power, and that makes the world a better place."
"But I also believe in due process, and we live in a very strange time where anybody can make an allegation against you and you are guilty until proven innocent," Callen continued. "It's just a fact that social media and the press alone can act as judge, jury and executioner… [so] when something like this happens, this is pretty much the only way you can defend yourself."
He went on to explain that he will "obviously" be taking a "leave of absence" from his weekly podcast -- which he co-hosts with former UFC heavyweight Brendan Schaub -- for the time being.
MADtv star Kathryn Fiore Tigerman claimed in the LA Times article that Callen held her down and raped her in 1999 at his home in Los Angeles. Three other women have since come forward, including Rachel Green, who alleges that in 2009, Callen pinned her against the wall of a fitting room and kissed her against her will while she was working as an American Apparel saleswoman in Pittsburgh. Claire Ganshert, an actress who allegedly had a four-year affair with Callen while he was still married to wife Amanda Humphrey, recalls a specific conversation she had with him in 2016. She tells the LA Times that the comedian allegedly told her that he believes all women have "a biological, primal desire to be raped."
The fourth woman is comedian Tiffany King, who claims that Callen asked her to give him oral sex in exchange for stage time and money in 2017.
Shortly after the article went live, a rep for Callen released a statement, on behalf of the comedian, to ET.
"Let me be very clear: I have never raped, forced myself upon a woman nor have I offered to trade stage time for sex. EVER," the statement -- which can be read in full here -- said, in part. "I know the truth. And I can only hold my head up high, remain true to myself, my family, my audience and know that I will not allow the cancel culture to subvert what I know and as importantly, what these women know, is the truth."