Actress Katharine McPhee has called out a media outlet for resurfacing a decade-old video of her sitting on Russell Brand‘s lap following allegations the British comedian sexually assaulted several women.
In the 2013 video, McPhee appeared on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon alongside Brand, who was already seated next to Jimmy Fallon when the Smash star walked out on stage.
Fallon proceeded to ask Brand to move over so McPhee could have his seat close to the desk. Instead, the Forgetting Sarah Marshall actor grabbed McPhee and pulled her onto his lap.
“Katharine is welcome to sit here,” the now 48-year-old said while wrapping his arms around the actress’ waist. “For the queen!”
When he eventually switched seats, Brand told McPhee, “You’re beautiful”, then added: “I’ll just be here with my sexual charisma.”
Daily Mail shared a post on Instagram about the video with a caption claiming that McPhee “looks so uncomfortable”.
The 39-year-old soon responded to the outlet in the comment section, slamming any insinuations it was trying to make.
“Daily Mail — I know nothing [about] what you are trying to claim here but this specific incident was over 10 years ago and it was harmless,” she commented.
“Please don’t try and use me for whatever purpose you are trying to serve.”
Brand has been the topic of countless headlines after UK newspaper The Times aired a report on September 16, in which four women accused him of sexual assault between 2006 and 2013.
One woman claimed she was just 16 during her relationship with Brand, who referred to her as “the child” while he was in his 30s.
Another woman alleged the actor raped her in his Los Angeles home. She was treated at a rape crisis centre that same day, which The Times confirmed via medical records.
A day before The Times‘ exposé was published, Brand preemptively denied the allegations and insisted his sexual encounters had always been consensual.
“Amidst this litany of astonishing, rather baroque attacks are some very serious allegations that I absolutely refute,” the father-of-two said in a YouTube video.
London police have shared that another woman has since reported that Brand sexually assaulted her in the early 2000s.
“Officers are in contact with the woman and will be providing her with support,” the Metropolitan Police statement said, per SBS News.