Empire director Lee Daniels issued a public apology to actor Sean Penn after Sean slapped him with a $10 million defamation of character lawsuit after Lee compared Sean’s domestic violence history to actor Terrence Howard’s on his show.
The apology was part of the settlement in their dispute. Daniels also donated an undisclosed amount to Sean Penn’s Haitian Relief charity. Read Lee Daniels full apology after the cut…
“I am so sorry that I have hurt you, Sean, and I apologize and retract my reckless statements about you. How thoughtless of me. You are someone I consider a friend, a brilliant actor and true Hollywood legend and humanitarian.”
“I too have been the subject of false attacks by others, like those made here. My most important role is as a father, and it is important to me that my children learn that it is wrong to reference gossip as fact, as I did here. That can be very damaging and hurtful.”
“Domestic violence is a very serious issue. My comments were cavalier; it was not my intention to diminish the severity of the issue, but rather to express a view regarding the disparate treatment of men of color in our national conversation. I apologize again for the distress that this has caused you and your family.”
My very best, Lee Daniels.
In their joint statement Sean Pen replied,
“I accept Lee’s heartfelt apology and appreciate the sincerity with which it was delivered. I also accept and appreciate his generous donation to J/P HRO, which will have a transformative effect on the lives of those we serve in Haiti.”