Bryan Singer has rejected allegations of sexual misconduct towards men and underage boys as a “homophobic smear.”
The gay Bohemian Rhapsody director denied a series of allegations published this week by Esquire reporters Alex French and Maximillian Potter in The Atlantic‘s March 2019 issue claiming that the star had abused four teenagers, including a 13-year-old.
Singer, who is best known for The Usual Suspects and the X-Men film franchise, sent Deadline a statement on Wednesday (January 23), in which he said: “The last time I posted about this subject, Esquire magazine was preparing to publish an article written by a homophobic journalist who has a bizarre obsession with me dating back to 1997.
“This homophobic smear piece has been conveniently timed to take advantage of [Bohemian Rhapsody‘s] success.”
— Bryan Singer
“After careful fact-checking and, in consideration of the lack of credible sources, Esquire chose not to publish this piece of vendetta journalism.
“That didn’t stop this writer from selling it to The Atlantic,” continued Singer, 53.
“It’s sad that The Atlantic would stoop to this low standard of journalistic integrity.
“Again, I am forced to reiterate that this story rehashes claims from bogus lawsuits filed by a disreputable cast of individuals willing to lie for money or attention.
“And it is no surprise that, with Bohemian Rhapsody being an award-winning hit, this homophobic smear piece has been conveniently timed to take advantage of its success.”
Bryan Singer has previously been accused of sexual misconduct
The director has repeatedly fielded allegations of sexual abuse across much of his career.
The Bohemian Rhapsody filmmaker was named in two separate 2014 civil lawsuits alleging that he forced 17-year-old Michael Egan III into sexual activities at parties in California and Hawaii, and forced a second unnamed 17-year-old into sexual acts at a party in London.
The two lawsuits were later dismissed.
Singer, who denies all wrongdoing, was also investigated by New York police after a report of a 2013 forcible sexual assault against an unnamed man in his 20s.
A fourth man, Cesar Sanchez-Guzman went public in 2017 to allege that Singer had raped him in 2003, when he was 17.
The Atlantic feature included four new accusations against Singer.
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One anonymous accuser alleged that he was just 15 when he had sex with Singer in 1997 at a Beverly Hills mansion, while a second alleged he had sex with Singer at a 1997 California party aged 17, below the state’s age of consent.
A third person, identified as Victor Valdovinos, recalled an incident aged 13 while working as an extra in Singer’s 1998 film Apt Pupil. He alleged the director “grabbed my genitals and started masturbating it.”
A further unnamed teen who alleged he had a sexual encounter with Singer told The Atlantic: “He would stick his hands down your pants without your consent. He was predatory in that he would ply people with alcohol and drugs and then have sex with them.”
Sanchez-Guzman recalled the alleged rape from 2003, telling the publication: “Bryan approached me wearing this grotesque smile. Like he was laughing.” He added that Singer told him: “Nobody is going to believe you.”
Bohemian Rhapsody tipped for Oscars success despite Bryan Singer ties
Bohemian Rhapsody was nominated for five Oscars on Tuesday (January 22), including Best Picture, though Singer was not among the Best Director nominees.
Singer signed on to the 20th Century Fox biopic in July 2017, but was sacked part-way through filming in December of that year after allegations about his on-set conduct.
The firing was announced days before Sanchez-Guzman went public with the rape accusation.
Dexter Fletcher stepped in to direct the remainder of the film.
Singer retained the sole direction credit on the final release, but has been absent from all of the film’s premieres, press events and award ceremonies.