Director Bryan Singer has been accused of raping a teenage boy at a yacht party in 2003 in a lawsuit filed Thursday.
The suit alleges that Singer led Cesar Sanchez-Guzman, then 17, into a bedroom under the pretense of giving him a tour of the yacht. The suit says Singer then locked the door and forced the teen to perform oral sex on him before raping Sanchez-Guzman.
“Later, Bryan Singer approached Cesar and told him that he was a producer in Hollywood and that he could help Cesar get into acting as long as Cesar never said anything about the incident,” the lawsuit reads. “He then told Cesar that no one would believe him if he ever reported the incident, and that he could hire people who are capable of ruining someone’s reputation.”
Sanchez-Guzman is suing Singer for damages related to years of “severe psychological, mental and emotional injuries, shame, humiliation and loss of enjoyment of life.” His lawyer, Jeffrey Herman, represented a man in a 2014 lawsuit against Singer that accused the director of sexually abusing a minor. Herman later dropped the suit and apologized, claiming the allegations were “untrue and provably false,” Variety reported.
Singer’s lawyer, Andrew Brettler, said his client “categorically denies these allegations and will vehemently defend this lawsuit to the very end.”
Brettler, in a statement to HuffPost, suggested the claims by Sanchez-Guzman were motivated by greed. Sanchez-Guzman “apparently claims that he did not remember this alleged incident from 2003 until now,” the lawyer said. “Significantly, when Sanchez-Guzman filed for bankruptcy only a few years ago, he failed to disclose this alleged claim when he was supposed to identify all of his assets, but conveniently, now that the bankruptcy court discharged all of his debts, he is able to recall the alleged events.”
Singer has directed several of the “X-Men” franchise movies and was fired from “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the Freddie Mercury bio-pic project, on Monday. Unnamed sources told The Hollywood Reporter that Singer had several clashes with the movie’s star, Rami Malek, and failed to show up for several days, forcing a production shutdown. The director said his absence was a result of needing to care for an ailing parent.
“I wanted nothing more than to be able to finish this project and help honor the legacy of Freddie Mercury and Queen, but Fox would not permit me to do so because I needed to temporarily put my health, and the health of my loved ones, first,” Singer told The Hollywood Reporter.
This story has been updated with comment from Singer’s lawyer.