News

‘X-Men’ director says sex abuse claims a ‘shakedown’

‘X-Men’ director says sex abuse claims a ‘shakedown’

ABUSE ALLEGATIONS:Bryan Singer, 48, said in a statement that the allegations are "outrageous, vicious and completely false." Photo: Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The director of the forthcoming “X-Men” film on Thursday called claims that he sexually abused a teen more than a decade ago a “sick, twisted shakedown,” and said he was dropping out of promotional events for the movie ahead of its release.

Bryan Singer, 48, said in a statement that the allegations are “outrageous, vicious and completely false.”

Last week, Michael Egan, 31, accused Singer in a civil lawsuit filed in federal court in Hawaii of drugging and raping him in 1999 in Hawaii and California. Egan, who was an aspiring teen actor at the time, seeks unspecified damages.

“I promise when this situation is over, the facts will show this to be the sick, twisted shakedown it is,” Singer said in a statement, adding that he would not participate in media events for the film because it would be a distraction.

A message left for Egan’s attorney on Thursday was not immediately returned.

The lawsuit could overshadow the promotional rollout of Singer’s “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” which is expected to be one of the year’s top grossing films.

The film is estimated to gross $108 million in its opening weekend at the U.S. box office, according to BoxOffice.com.

The latest installment of the “X-Men” franchise stars Patrick Stewart, Jennifer Lawrence and Hugh Jackman, and is distributed by 20th Century Fox.

Singer’s attorney had previously denied the allegations.

Egan has also sued three other entertainment industry executives in Hawaii with sexually abusing him during that time. All three have denied the accusations.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; Editing by Piya Sinha-Roy and Mohammad Zargham)

Recently Played

Latest Headlines

in Viral Videos

Famous album covers come alive

18-overlay1

No, your eyes aren't tricking you. The album covers in Roy Kafri's new music video ARE singing along.

in Music

Judge refuses to dismiss ‘Blurred Lines’ lawsuit

pharrell

Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams have failed to convince a judge to dismiss a copyright lawsuit.

in Entertainment

Oprah, Neil Patrick Harris among year’s most ‘fascinating’

FILE - This Sept. 20, 2009 file photo shows host Neil Patrick Harris during the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Harris will host the Emmys again. CBS will air the Emmycast live from Los Angeles on Sept. 22. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, file)

Barbara Walters is back with her annual TV special.

in Entertainment

Toys ‘R’ Us pulls ‘Breaking Bad’ dolls after protest

breaking

If a Walter White action figure was on your Christmas list, it just got more difficult to find.

in Entertainment

Renee Zellweger: Furor over ‘peaceful’ face is ‘silly’

zellweger

The "Bridget Jones's Diary" star says her "new face" is a result of a massive lifestyle change.