Andy Signore (pictured), who was fired from Defy Media last year over sexual abuse allegations, is suing the company for what he says was “reckless firing.”
Signore, the creator of Honest Trailers, says Defy Media used the #MeToo movement as an excuse to fire him while stripping him of his ownership rights in the company without conducting a proper investigation over sexual assault allegations, according to a report from the Hollywood Reporter, which cited a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court.
According to the complaint, Signore informed Defy that he had proof the allegations were false and their relationship was consensual, but the company fired him before he was able to fully tell his side of the story.
Signore says him and his accuser had a sexual text relationship that included explicit messages and naked photos after meeting in Chicago. He claims the woman then flew to Los Angeles to visit him. According to the complaint, both of them “repeatedly affirmed the plan to engage in sexual activity with each other.”
Defy Media has denied the claims, calling them “baseless.”
Established in 2013, Defy Media laid off around 20 employees in March as the result of restructuring within in the company’s product/tech, creative services, and programmatic advertising departments. The layoffs came at the end of a two year long, unsuccessful attempt by Defy to find a buyer willing to pay upwards of $150 million for the company.
Since the layoffs, the company has started to sell off its brands, confirming VideoInk’s report published in February. Screen Junkies was sold to Fandom in early July while Defy also sold the gaming brand The Escapist to Enthusiast Gaming in the same month.