It seems things are just as dramatic off-the-set of “Desperate Housewives” as they are on-set. According to TMZ, former-“Housewife” Nicollette Sheridan has filed a lawsuit against show creator Marc Cherry, saying he assaulted her in 2008 during the filming of one of the show’s fifth season.
Sheridan’s character, Edie Britt, was killed off that season, and rumors are floating about that the assault led to Sheridan’s firing.
According to the lawsuit itself, Cherry created a hostile working environment for Sheridan and the other actresses on-set, and was incredibly aggressive in his dealings with them. In one noted incident, after Sheridan’s co-star Teri Hatcher spoke to ABC executives without Cherry’s knowledge, Cherry publicly remarked, “I hope Teri Hatcher gets hit by a car and dies.”
The aggressive atmosphere on set intensified on September 24, 2008, when Sheridan questioned the way a character was being developed in the script. According to the lawsuit, Cherry took her aside and then hit her in the face and head.
Cherry allegedly went to Sheridan’s trailer to apologize, but the aggressive atmosphere on-set did not diminish, and it was at this point, the lawsuit contends, that Cherry actively worked to terminate Sheridan’s employment, and she was killed off at the end of the season.
Sheridan claims in the complaint that she has lost millions of dollars as a result of her firing, since she was to be paid $200,000 or more an episode in future seasons.
All in all, the lawsuit has seven unique complaints: causes of action for wrongful termination, assault and battery, gender violence, discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation and age, retaliatory termination, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
In the LA Times, ABC has briefly responded to the complaints, saying that they have not yet read the full complaint, but that they had received previous allegations from Sheridan and found them without merit at that time.