SEX-row star Noel Clarke last night said he was deeply sorry and pledged to seek help to “educate myself and change for the better”.
The Kidulthood and Doctor Who actor, 45, spoke out after ITV pulled the finale of his police drama Viewpoint from last night’s schedule.
Bosses took the highly unusual step just hours before the thriller was set to air saying it was “no longer appropriate” to show it.
Sky also halted its work with the married dad of three, including his crime show Bulletproof.
The fallout follows a Guardian article on Thursday in which it is alleged Clarke has groped, harassed and abused more than 20 women.
In last night’s statement he vehemently denied any sexual misconduct or criminal wrongdoing.
He said: “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.”
Earlier his Bulletproof co-star Ashley Walters said he was “deeply saddened” by the claims made against Clarke but that he could not ignore them.
Walters, 38, wrote on social media: “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 neither in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore these allegations.
“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.’’
Former female co-stars of Clarke also reacted to the claims.
Jaime Winstone, who featured in 2006’s Kidulthood, shared imagery for Time’s Up, the movement founded amid the Harvey Weinstein scandal which supports victims of sexual harassment.
Jaime, 35, wrote alongside: “When you’re late to the party but you’ve been on the list for 15 years.”
Before the allegations surfaced, Jaime had protested against Clarke being awarded a Bafta on April 10 for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema. Bafta stripped him of the award on Thursday night.
On Monday, Jaime shared an image of Brit star Daniel Kaluuya, 32, collecting his Best Supporting Actor award for Judas and the Black Messiah at the Oscars with the caption: “Now that’s what you call Outstanding Contribution to film — man like Daniel, congratulations well-deserved #bafta #oscar.”
Outlander actress Rosie Day, 26, pictured with Clarke at a 2019 Bafta event, posted on Instagram: “I stand in solidarity with every single woman. When the abuser is welcome the victims are not.”
Christina Chong, 38, who starred in Bulletproof in 2018, shared the Guardian article on Twitter, saying: “The UK film industry’s best kept secret for years!”
She added: “If in doubt, trust me, it’s true. Why would 20 women put themselves through reliving their traumas to bring down an actor who isn’t even a household name? He’s a sexual predator #stoppable.”
Bulletproof star Mandeep Dhillon, 30, shared the report on her Instagram with the caption: “About f****** time. Don’t @ me.”
Christina replied: “Took the words right out of my mouth.”
Both actresses posted an identical message on their Instagram profiles saying: “We stand by the women sexually harassed by Noel Clarke #stoppable #timesup #metoo.”
Last night ITV sensationally axed the fifth and final episode of Viewpoint in which Clarke plays surveillance cop DC Martin King.
A spokesman for the broadcaster said: “In light of the very serious nature of the allegations against Noel Clarke raised by 20 women in The Guardian’s report, ITV has decided it is no longer appropriate to broadcast the final episode on ITV main channel this evening.
“We are mindful that some of our viewers have already invested four hours of their time over the past four nights in following this thriller which was due to conclude this evening, and they have yet to see the final episode.
"As such we plan to make it available on ITV Hub tonight for a limited time for any viewers who wish to seek it out, and watch its conclusion.”
The episode will be available on the Hub until Sunday night but won’t be made available on any ITV platform after that.
It is understood neither ITV nor its producers Tiger Aspect, received any complaints about Clarke’s behaviour during the making of the show.
The statement also said: “ITV has a zero-tolerance policy to bullying, harassment and victimisation and robust procedures in place to investigate and deal with any complaints. We strongly believe that everyone deserves to work in a supportive and safe environment.”
Sky’s fourth series of Bulletproof was due to start later this year, but a question mark now hangs over the project.
A spokesman said: “Sky stands against all forms of sexual harassment and bullying and takes any allegations of this nature extremely seriously.
"Effective immediately, we have halted Noel Clarke’s involvement in any future productions.”
Bafta has said it was alerted to the claims against Clarke 13 days before the ceremony. But it said it was provided with no evidence that would allow it to investigate.
Clarke, wife Iris, a former make-up artist, and their three children live in Kensington, West London, a few miles from where he grew up in Ladbroke Grove.
He shot to fame as Mickey Smith in Doctor Who from 2005-2010 opposite David Tennant’s Time Lord.
Clarke starred, wrote and directed the films Kidulthood, Adulthood and Brotherhood, released in 2006, 2008 and 2016.
Star’s sick mic game
A VIDEO emerged last night of Noel Clarke touching female co-stars with a microphone while pretending it was a penis.
He was on stage with Doctor Who actors Camille Coduri, pictured, and Annette Badland for a fan Q&A session in 2019.
Viewers said they “squirmed”.
Before last night’s statement, he said in response to The Guardian story: “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.
“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.”
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