A former “Desperate Housewives” actor took her ex-employer to court on Thursday, claiming unfair dismissal from the hit TV series about lust and scandal on Wisteria Lane.
Nicollette Sheridan claims she was fired for complaining that the show’s creator, Marc Cherry, slapped her on the head during rehearsals for a scene in September 2008. The 48-year-old actor featured in five seasons of the ABC series, before her character Edie Britt was written out of it a few months after the slapping incident — she claims in retaliation for her complaint.
Sheridan filed a lawsuit in April 2010, alleging battery and wrongful terminal of employment against Cherry and Touchstone Television Productions, which makes the show.
The actor told the Los Angeles Superior Court that she wanted a funny line to remain in the script, but Cherry resisted because it included part of a Beatles song, for which the studio would have to pay royalties. While discussing the line, Cherry shouted: “‘What is it that you want?’” said Sheridan, who at times struggled to maintain her composure. When she tried to respond, “Mr Cherry stepped toward me and he took his right hand and he hit me upside the head,” she said, her voice breaking. “It was a nice wallop.”
She says she retired to her trailer, and after some time Cherry came to apologise she said, quoting him as telling her: “I am on bended knee begging your forgiveness.”
Defense attorney Adam Levin said Cherry simply tapped Sheridan on the head, trying to give her directions for the next scene. Several of her former cast mates, including Eva Longoria, Marcia Cross, James Denton and Felicity Huffman, are expected to appear as witnesses to defend Cherry at the trial.
“Desperate Housewives”, about lust, gossip, and foul play in a pampered American suburb, is to take its final bow at the end of its current eighth season.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 3rd, 2012.
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