X-Men director Bryan Singer denies 'sick' abuse claims

By Emma Brant
Newsbeat reporter

image copyrightGetty Images

Hollywood director Bryan Singer has spoken out against the sex abuse accusations made against him and has announced he will miss any forthcoming press events for the new X-Men film.

In a statement, he branded the claims "outrageous, vicious and false".

His statement came after aspiring actor Michael Egan filed a legal case on 16 April, claiming he was sexually abused by Singer when he was 17.

The accusations date back to 1999, in Hawaii and California.

Singer's statement confirmed he would be withdrawing from "upcoming media events" for his latest film.

He said: "I do not want these fictitious claims to divert any attention from X-Men: Days of Future Past.

"This fantastic film is a labour of love and one of the greatest experiences of my career.

image copyrightGetty Images
image captionX-Men: Days of Future Past stars James McAvoy and Hugh Jackman in London promoting the new film

"So, out of respect to all of the extraordinary contributions from the incredibly talented actors and crew involved, I've decided not to participate in the upcoming media events for the film.

"However, I promise when this situation is over, the facts will show this to be the sick, twisted shake down it is. I want to thank fans, friends and family for all their amazing and overwhelming support."

Michael Egan claims that he was subjected to drugs, alcohol and threats as part of a wider "group of adult males similarly positioned in the entertainment industry".

Singer's lawyer Marty Singer has said that the director wasn't in Hawaii when Egan claims he was abused.

media captionMichael Egan urged victims of sexual abuse to come forward

Earlier this week, Singer also said that the accuser's lawyer, Jeff Herman, had behaved with "reckless and outrageous conduct" over the case.

Egan has also sued three other entertainment industry figures, two former television executives and a theatre producer.

He claims he was lured into a sex ring with promises of auditions for acting and modelling by being put on the payroll as an actor, but was forced to have sex with men at parties within the entertainment industry in Hollywood.

The US media has decided to reveal the identity of Michael Egan, as he is speaking publicly about the claims.

Usually the names of victims of sex abuse are not published in America.

X-Men: Days of Future Past is set for release on 22 May.

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