Bryan Singer, director of The Usual Suspects and the upcoming film X-Men: Days of Future Past, was accused of sexually assaulting a teenage boy after allegedly plying him with drugs and alcohol on several occasions in 1998 and 1999.
The Wrap reported Wednesday night that the lawsuit against Singer was filed in federal court in Hawaii. The plaintiff, Michael F. Egan III, was identified in a statement from his attorneys, saying he was 17 when he was introduced to Singer after already being assaulted by another man, former Digital Entertainment Network chair Marc Collins-Rector, at Collins-Rector's residence in Encino, California.
The suit argues that all three were sitting in the nude in Collins-Rector's jacuzzi when Collins-Rector passed Egan from his lap to Singer's.
"Defendant Singer provided an alcoholic beverage to Plaintiff and mentioned finding a role for him in an upcoming movie that he was directing," the suit states. "Defendant Singer told Plaintiff how 'this group' controls Hollywood, and that he was sexy. Defendant Singer masturbated Plaintiff and then performed oral sex upon him. Defendant Singer solicited Plaintiff to perform oral sex upon him which Plaintiff resisted."
Collins-Rector pleaded guilty in 2004 to charges of luring five teenage boys across state lines for the purposes of sexually assaulting them. He has been a registered sex offender since then. Egan also accused Collins-Rector of threatening Egan at gunpoint not to resist the advances made at him.
"The claims made against Bryan Singer are completely without merit," Singer's attorney, Marty Singer, told The Hollywood Reporter. "We are very confident that Bryan will be vindicated in this absurd and defamatory lawsuit. It is obvious that this case was filed in an attempt to get publicity at the time when Bryan' s new movie is about to open in a few weeks."
Egan's attorney, Jeff Herman, indicated that the suit against Singer was the first of several he plans to file. He also represented the plaintiffs in five sexual assault lawsuits filed against former Sesame Street puppeteer Kevin Clash, accusing him of engaging in sexual relationships with teenage boys. One of those clients dropped his lawsuit, another retracted his accusations, and three of the cases were thrown out of court for exceeding the statute of limitations.
"Hollywood has a problem with the sexual exploitation of children," Herman was quoted as saying.
Singer was also the target of a lawsuit in 1997, during the making of his film Apt Pupil, accusing him of forcing underage male actors to strip naked. The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office determined at the time that there was no basis for a criminal case.
"It's an absolute smear job," screenwriter Brandon Boyce told journalist Don Murphy at the time, saying the plaintiffs were "trying to blackmail people based on their sexuality."
[Image via X-Men: Days of Future Past official Facebook page]