Several of the women who reported Fred Savage to Disney human resources for sexual harassment and assault detailed the allegations against him, four months after he was fired from The Wonder Years reboot. In May, Disney fired Savage as executive producer and director of the 20th Television series, with Disney only citing "allegations of inappropriate conduct" as the reason. Now, the six women who reported him are speaking out.
Days after Savage was fired, a source close to Savage told Page Six the actor-director was "doing a lot of self-reflection." Savage, 46, "knows he can be an a-hole at times," the source claimed. After seeing that report, several women spoke out to The Hollywood Reporter about Savage's alleged behavior on the set. "I and the other women feel that people need to know what the wrongdoing was," one woman said. The women asked to remain anonymous out of fear of repercussions.
The women said they saw two sides of Savage while working on The Wonder Years. One was a charismatic colleague and another was his "far darker, angrier" version. "His eyes would go dead" when he switched to the latter persona, one woman said. They also claimed Savage only showed his "absolute perfect, best face" to actors and executives, but "below-the-line employees who don't have power" saw the other side.
Some crew members were concerned about a relationship Savage had with one of the younger women working on the show. She moved into the home Savage lived in during filming n Atlanta. The woman, who did not speak with THR, allegedly told a colleague Savage was buying her gifts and talking about their future together. Savage allegedly grew "extremely controlling" of her behavior, one associate said, adding that Savage was "manipulative and erratic."
Another crewmember tried to help the young woman, but Savage "proceeded to verbally harass me and belittle me." The woman found Savage "scary... When he pulled me aside multiple times when he was verbally harassing me, his eyes would go dead," but he would flip a "switch and he's Fred Savage." Crewmembers thought the woman was "no longer the bubbly person" she was before meeting Savage.
Savage's relationship with this woman was what ultimately led to six women filing a report with Disney HR. However, crewmembers claimed Savage showed "very blatant favoritism" towards another woman in her early 30s. "I've been in the industry a long time. I've never seen anything quite like this, and I've seen a lot," this woman, an industry veteran, told THR.
The woman said she became "acquaintances and friends" with Savage and their relationship began platonically. At one point, she was suddenly fired, but she does not think Savage had anything to do with it. Still, she said Savage was "ecstatic" about her firing and told her to move to Los Angeles. When she joined him and the Wonder Years crew at an Atlanta bar, Savage allegedly assaulted her in the women's bathroom, the woman claimed.
"He put his mouth on mine very forcefully. He went for the top of my pants," the woman recalled. "I brushed him away. Then he put his mouth on mine again, grabbed my hand, and pulled it on his groin area. I was pulling back. He stopped very angrily. I shoulder-checked him so I could get out."
Savage allegedly continued texting her for a few weeks after the incident, once asking to meet. He also left a voicemail, which she shared with THR. He apologized, and the woman said she never responded.
Savage denied some of the allegations in a response to THR. "Since I was 6 years old, I have worked on hundreds of sets with thousands of people, and have always strived to contribute to an inclusive, safe and supportive work environment," the actor said. "It is devastating to learn that there are co-workers who feel I have fallen short of these goals."
"While there are some incidents being reported that absolutely did not and could not have happened, any one person who feels hurt or offended by my actions is one person too many," Savage continued. "I will work to address and change any behavior that has negatively affected anyone, as nothing in this world is more important to me than being a supportive co-worker, friend, husband, father, and person."0comments
Savage faced allegations before. In 1993, he settled a sexual harassment case with a customer on the original Wonder Years. He also settled a lawsuit with a female crewmember on The Grinder who claimed Savage "constantly hurled profanities" at women employees and struck her during a costume fitting. A Grinder costume designer also accused Savage of creating an uncomfortable work environment, but a judge dismissed the case.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, you can contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to rainn.org.