X-Men director Bryan Singer is facing four additional accusations of sex with underage boys according to an Atlantic exposé published Wednesday.
Rumors, and they were only rumors, about Singer’s predilection for underage boys have been floating around for two decades. We first heard of “twink” pool parties, reports of regular gatherings hosted by members of Hollywood’s gay elite, including Singer, where legions of underage, disposable boys were invited and preyed upon by the adults.
Then, in 2014, Michael Egan came forward to accuse Singer of drugging and raping him as a 17-year-old. The attorney in the case made big promises about exposing a Hollywood pedophilia ring. Nothing, however, ever came of it and the Egan case eventually fell apart due to inconsistencies.
By 2017, thanks largely to this disgraceful Deadline story that sought to smear Singer for being promiscuous and gay, the whole thing was starting to look like a witch hunt.
There was a lot of smoke, but no fire, and because this is America where you are innocent until proven guilty, Singer continued to work at the highest levels of the film business, directing X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), X-Men Apocalypse (2016), and last year’s smash Bohemian Rhapsody, which just received a Best Picture nomination.
Although he is credited as the sole director of Bohemian Rhapsody, it was during production that his career fell apart. Two weeks before filming ended, Singer was fired. Another director was brought in and Singer had nothing to do with post-production, which is where a lot of directing takes place.
Singer’s termination was based, so the studio said, on his temperament and frequent (and expensive) absences. In the background, though, more allegations were hovering.
In October, Bryan Singer took to Instagram to pre-empt the damning Atlantic story released Wednesday.
“I have known for some time that Esquire magazine [the Atlantic writers also write for Esquire] a negative article about me,” Singer wrote. “They have contacted my friends, colleagues and people I don’t even know. In today’s climate where people’s careers are being harmed by mere accusations, what Esquire is attempting to do is a reckless disregard for the truth, making assumptions that are fictional and irresponsible.”
Singer had every reason to worry about the Atlantic story, for it includes four new allegations against the filmmaker, serious allegations that run the gamut from sex with underage boys to groping underage boys without consent.
Victor Valdovinos accuses Singer of fondling him on the set of Apt Pupil (1998) when he was just 13 and Singer was 32:
Eventually, he says, Singer came back and made small talk. How are you doing? Do you need anything? “Every time he had a chance—three times—he would go back there … He was always touching my chest.” Finally, according to Valdovinos, Singer reached through the towel flaps and “grabbed my genitals and started masturbating it.” The director also “rubbed his front part on me,” Valdovinos alleges. “He did it all with this smile.” Valdovinos says that Singer told him, “You’re so good-looking … I really want to work with you … I have a nice Ferrari … I’m going to take care of you.”
Apt Pupil is already at the center of a scandal involving underage extras. Three boys claimed in a lawsuit that Singer forced them to strip naked for a shower scene. The suit was filed in 1997, two weeks after the scene was filmed, and eventually re-filmed with adults and settled.
The three other accusers in the Atlantic story are identified using pseudonyms.
“Andy” alleges he had sex with Singer in 1997 after being passed off to the director by Singer’s then 37-year-old business partner Marc Collins-Rector.
He further alleges that Apt Pupil star, the late Brad Renfro, who would have been 15 at the time, was in the room:
Collins-Rector boasted that he had a private jet and suggested they meet. The next day, Andy says, Collins-Rector sent a cab to pick him up in front of his apartment complex in Las Vegas and bring him to one of the big casinos on the Strip. Andy says he stayed with Collins-Rector until late that night, maybe until the next morning, and that they had oral sex. Andy was 14.
Collins-Rector took Andy on a Rodeo Drive shopping spree and then he and Andy had sex. It was Andy’s first time.
Singer had brought along Brad Renfro—the star of Apt Pupil, who was now 15. (According to two sources, Singer sometimes referred to Renfro as his boyfriend.) Renfro sat sheepishly next to the waterbed, looking unsure of what to do while Singer and Andy fooled around. Clothes came off, but Renfro didn’t move. “I remember wanting Brad to join in,” Andy says. “I don’t think Brad was gay, or even bi. I think he was going with the flow. We talked about it. Like me, he looked around at all of the things these guys had, all of the money. Maybe he thought the guys were going to do things for him.” (Renfro died of a drug overdose in 2008, at the age of 25.)
Andy says Renfro left the room, and then Andy had sex with Singer. “I just remember how loud the moaning was.
Andy says he slept with Singer a handful of times after that. One night, around 1999, he met up with Singer in Las Vegas. They took a long walk. “I showed him where all the gay bars were,” Andy recalls. “It was awkward. He had another boy or two with him and had no interest in me.”
Renfro died of a heroin overdose in 2008 at age 25.
Singer’s business partner, Collins-Rector, was indicted in 2000 for transporting a minor over state lines for sex purposes. He “fled the country,” reports the Atlantic, “and was a fugitive for almost two years before being arrested in Spain, where authorities discovered a cache of weapons and 8,000 images of child pornography in the villa where he was living.”
After serving 18 months in a Spanish prison, “he was extradited to the United States and ultimately pleaded guilty to nine charges of transporting a minor across state lines for the purpose of sex. He was sentenced to time served in Spain plus three years of court supervision and is now a registered sex offender.”
“Eric” says he was just 17 (the age of consent in California is 18) when he and Singer had sex:
Later that evening, Eric says, he and Singer got to flirting in the hot tub. “Just so you know, I’m 31,” Singer said. “Just so you know, I’m 17,” Eric responded. He says they had sex that night.
Over the following weeks, Eric says he hooked up with Singer a few more times—at Singer’s place and at the M&C Estate. Eric understood that he had no purchase on Singer: The director, he says, had people who brought him other boys just like Eric. “If you weren’t young and cute enough to be their boy, you could still ingratiate yourself by bringing boys to them,” he says.
The fourth man is not sure if he was 17 or 18 at the time.
Cesar Sanchez-Guzman filed a civil suit against Singer some time ago (it’s still working its way through the system) and spoke with the Atlantic. He claims Singer raped him in 2003 when he was just 17. The lawsuit remains unresolved.
Sanchez-Guzman also all but accuses tech billionaire Lester Waters of setting him up for the rape:
Waters invited Sanchez-Guzman to join him and some close friends on a yacht the next day—they would sail from Lake Union into Lake Washington. Sanchez-Guzman was floored by the offer. The next morning, at the marina, Waters introduced him to his friends, including Bryan Singer. (Waters did not respond to multiple requests for comment.)
According to Sanchez-Guzman, roughly 20 people were on board the yacht—most of them teenage boys. He didn’t know anyone but Waters. Early in the night, Singer was friendly and flirtatious. Later, the director offered to give Sanchez-Guzman a tour of the yacht. They found their way to a small room [where, according to the suit] Singer “forcibly anally penetrated Cesar. Cesar pleaded for him to stop.”
Afterward, Sanchez-Guzman says he found Waters above deck and told him what had happened; he says Waters laughed and told him he should feel lucky.
Waters refused to comment on the story.