Daniel Handler, the author behind Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, had found his franchise revitalized with the release of Netflix’s adaptation, but he recently got into trouble when multiple female colleagues have accused him of inappropriate sexual comments.
According to Pacific Standard, several women have come forward to say that Handler has made several lewd comments during book events and writers’ conferences; joking about his testicles in front of elementary kids and probing the sexual history of other authors.
The accusations came after Handler signed a pledge that authors wouldn’t attend events without an anti-harassment plan. Handler has since released a statement saying:
“It has never been my wish to insult any of my professional colleagues. I sincerely, if tardily, apologize… My whole life my sense of humor has not been for everyone, and my books continue to be regarded, by a segment of the population, as inappropriate. As someone who’s been a struggling author, I take seriously the responsibilities of my visibility, and have always thought that treating all of my colleagues the same was the best way to dispel the unease that can come from a competitive or self-conscious environment. As a survivor of sexual violence, I also know very well how words or behaviors that are harmless or even liberating to some people can be upsetting to others.”
Handler virtually disappeared after his Unfortunate Events series ended, but with the Netflix show proving to be a success, he had suddenly found himself in the limelight again. Hopefully, a lot of his accusers will feel empathy toward his statement. After all, I think the guy was just trying to be funny and ended up being awkward; and who hasn’t had multiple awkward social encounters?
H/T: The Wrap