Jeremy Piven said during the Harvey Weinstein scandal the public assumed he was like TV character Ari Gold – the aggressive, womanising and loathsome agent he played in HBO's award-winning drama Entourage.
Jeremy Piven, who has become a stand-up comedian, says that his acting career was destroyed after he became an “easy target” at the height of the #MeToo movement.
Piven was accused by eight women of sexually abusing them but none have warranted police investigation. CBS canned the TV drama series Wisdom of the Crowd, in which he had the starring role as Jeffrey Tanner, after 13 episodes last year because of poor ratings and the sexual assault allegations made against him.
In a podcast Jeremy Piven On Getting Black Balled In Hollywood with comedian Andrew Schulz, which you can watch on YouTube, he said during the Harvey Weinstein scandal the public assumed he was like TV character Ari Gold – the aggressive, womanising and loathsome agent he played in HBO’s award-winning drama Entourage.
He told Schulz he was “a case of collateral damage”.
“You play a major Hollywood guy, who is very abrasive, and we all know those people — they exist, and they’re not so fun. It’s fun to watch, but we don’t want to be around them,” he said, speaking publicly since the accusations were made against him.
“That’s an easy target to take a shot at. Not only who wouldn’t believe it, but who wouldn’t rally behind it to take that guy down?”
Entourage stars – Jerry Ferrera, Jeremy Piven, Adrian Grenier, Kevin Connolly and Kevin Dillon.
Piven said he is not Ari Gold in real life and worked hard to create a Hollywood profile.
“I am a journeyman actor, stage actor. I am a Jewish stage actor. There is no white privilege. I did 40 movies before I did Entourage where I’m playing blah blah blah’s best friend. We were getting scale plus-10 (better pay and work conditions) and I’m grinding, and I wouldn’t change a thing, OK? So I’ve earned every crumb in my life.”
He said the #MeToo movement had been weakened by the number of false claims by accusers looking to get money and fame off the back of it.
“The biggest tragedy of opportunists coming out of the woodwork is that the real victims are taking a step back,” he said.
Jeremy Piven is now a stand-up comedian. Photo: Facebook / Jeremy Piven Page
Piven took a lie-detector test to prove three women who accused him of sexually assaulting them were lying in 2017. He passed the test, administered by a member of the American Polygraph Association. with “no signs of deception”.
In October 2017, reality TV star and Playboy Playmate Ariane Bellamar, was the first woman to accuse Piven – via a tweet – of inappropriate behaviour.
Two days later Cassidy Freeman, who appeared in Smallville, also accused Piven, via Instagram, of sexual assault.
A third woman, advertising executive Tiffany Bacon Scourby, said that Piven assaulted her back in 2003 after inviting her back to his hotel.
Piven released a statement on Twitter denying the accusations levelled at him.
“Let me begin by saying that the accusations against me are absolutely false and completely fabricated,” he wrote.
“I would never force myself on a woman. Period. I have offered to take a polygraph to support my innocence. I keep asking myself, ‘How does one prove something didn’t happen?’
“What I am not able to do is speculate as to the motivations of these women. As a human being I feel compassion for the victims of such acts, but I am perplexed as to the misdirection of anger with false accusations against me and hope they do not detract from the stories that should be heard.
“We seem to be entering dark times — allegations are being printed as facts, and lives are being put in jeopardy without a hearing, due process or evidence. I hope we can give people the benefit of a doubt before we rush to judgment.
“Continuing to tear each other down and destroy careers based on mere allegations is not productive on any level. I hope we can use this moment to begin a constructive dialogue on these issues, which are real and need to be addressed.”
Then later in November 2017, Entourage extra Anastasia Taneie claimed Piven sexually assaulted her.
In January last year, Buzzfeed published allegations that three more women were sexually abused by Piven, which he vehemently denied.
Piven told Schulz that he was enjoying being a stand-up comedian.
“When I go on the road, and I’m selling out these rooms, and I’m standing up there with nothing to hide, and I’m making them laugh from beginning to end, that’s real,” he said.
“I can get better as a comic every day, and not take a victim mentality, which is, ‘Man, they took me down.'”