X-Men director Bryan Singer has been accused of sexually abusing a teenage boy in the late 1990s, the Associated Press reported Thursday, April 17.
In a lawsuit that was filed Wednesday in Hawaii federal court, the accuser, Michael Egan III -- a former child model and aspiring actor -- alleges the abuse occurred on more than one occasion when he was 17. Egan claims Singer, 48, gave him drugs and alcohol, and coerced him into having oral and anal sex, the AP reported.
The lawsuit also claims Egan was "lured into a sex ring" with promises of future jobs in the entertainment industry. Instead, the aspiring actor was allegedly paid and forced to have sex with adult men. His lawsuit does not accuse the director of coercing Egan into the ring.
Singer's attorney Marty Singer released a statement to AP responding to Egan's claims as "absurd" and "defamatory."
"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," Marty Singer (unrelated to Bryan) told the news outlet. Marty is a well-known attorney, who has represented sex abuse victims in high-profile cases including lawsuits against the Boy Scouts of America and the Roman Catholic Church. He has also represented celebrities like John Travolta and Ryan O'Neal.
Egan is seeking unspecified damages, and seeking to charge Singer with claims of assault, battery, infliction of emotional distress, and invasion of privacy for more than $75,000 on each of his four accusations.
Bryan Singer has worked on films like Superman Returns and The Usual Suspects. His next movie, X-Men: Days of Future Past -- the fifth movie in the X-Men franchise -- will hit theaters May 23.