Erez Drigues, the lead actor and co-creator of the Kan public broadcaster’s dramedy “Rehearsals,” has been accused of repeated instances of sexual harassment.
Kan announced last week that “Rehearsals” will go ahead with a second season, probably without Drigues.
Shortly after an in-depth profile of Drigues appeared in the Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper in January, Ofir Sgerski wrote a Facebook post describing the “sleazy” text messages that Drigues had sent her a few years back.
Then, last Wednesday, feminist news website Politically Koret ran a story (Hebrew) about Drigues, including interviews with four women who came forward describing instances of his sexual misconduct.
All four, having met Drigues through the theater world, related situations in which he would message them with inappropriate questions about their sex lives. One of the women was as young as 16 or 17. Drigues was 30 years old at the time. He is now 40.
After the mainstream Hebrew media picked up the story, Drigues responded publicly, acknowledging his behavior and describing the actions he has taken to change his ways.
Drigues said part of his efforts to rehabilitate himself included writing the “Rehearsals” series, which featured a character dealing with sexual addiction, in an attempt to place the issue on primetime television.
“The process is personal; it isn’t over yet and I hope I can apologize to those I hurt,” said Drigues. “But it’s important for me to emphasize that I never allowed personal matters to enter any professional decisions.”
Drigues’ writing and acting partner Noa Koler wrote on Instagram that she was pained and shattered by the news. Koler said she wasn’t initially aware of Drigues’ problem, as they have always lived separate personal lives.
Four years ago, while they were writing “Rehearsals,” Drigues told Koler that he was addicted to sex and was in therapy with a psychiatrist and psychologist. He also told Koler he wanted to write a character who was dealing with this issue.
“It’s not the Erez I know; I want to believe a person can change their ways,” wrote Koler on Instagram. “I don’t know what will happen with ‘Rehearsals,’ it doesn’t seem important to me.”