Sean Penn Hits 'Empire' Co-Creator With $10 Million Defamation Lawsuit

Sean Penn has filed a whopping $10 million defamation suit against director Lee Daniels, the co-creator of the hit TV show Empire.

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In a recent interview, Daniels came to the defense of Empire star, Terrence Howard, who has been accused of hitting women in his past. Daniels was quoted as telling The Hollywood Reporter that Howard hasn’t done anything “different than Marlon Brando or Sean Penn."

Penn’s lawsuit says: "Daniels has falsely asserted and/or implied that Penn is guilty of ongoing, continuous violence against women.”

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Part of the complaint adds: “Daniels falsely equates Penn with Howard, even though, while he has certainly had several brushes with the law, Penn (unlike Howard) has never been arrested, much less convicted, for domestic violence, as his ex-wives (including Madonna) would confirm and attest."

It continues: "Nor has Penn admitted to 'slap(ping)' a woman or abusing others (as Howard has also reportedly admitted, reportedly asserted that he was acting in self-defense.)"

In 1989, Madonna reportedly filed an assault claim against Penn when they were married, but later withdrew the complaint.

"Madonna asked that there be no criminal charges pressed. There is no other evidence with which to base a criminal charge so there won't be a criminal charge filed," a spokesman for the DA’s office said at the time, according to the New York Daily News.

Lee Daniels has not yet commented on the lawsuit.

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