John Barrowman insisted his “silly behaviour” on the set of Doctor Who has been exaggerated as he took part in his first TV interview since the allegations arose.
The actor, who starred as Captain Jack Harkness, was accused of repeatedly exposing himself on the set of the BBC One sci-fi series and its sister show Torchwood.
He later said he had taken part in “tomfoolery” but denied it was ever intended or interpreted as sexual in nature.
Appearing on ITV’s Lorraine, Barrowman admitted he was feeling “extremely nervous” about addressing the situation.
The 54-year-old said: “I think that if it was now it would be crossing the line. I think that something that happened 15 years ago – it was bawdy behaviour, silly behaviour.
“It was being done in the confines of the set and we were like a family working together. The fact that it was stories that I’ve already told, I’ve been telling them for years. I haven’t hidden anything.
“They have been exaggerated and they have tried to turn them into sexual harassment, which it absolutely is not.
“The one thing that for me, all the people that are making the fuss about it, they weren’t there. They don’t know the context of things that were done. Like I said, I would never do it now.
“But what we’re not allowing people and myself to do with the continued bashing in the press and everything that is going on just to sell the newspapers, we’re not allowing people to learn to adapt and to change – and that’s the most important thing.”
Earlier this year, ITV confirmed Barrowman would not be returning as a judge for the next series of Dancing On Ice.
He had featured on the panel of the celebrity skating competition since 2019, after appearing on the programme as a contestant in 2006.
Barrowman said his departure was unrelated to the claims and was prompted by him taking on another role on All Star Musicals, another ITV series.
“Dancing On Ice is also a show that changes judges all the time and it was nothing to do with that,” he said.
“ITV were clear about that, which I’m extremely grateful for.”