Trump campaign plans to sue ‘The Apprentice’ for ‘malicious defamation’: report

Donald Trump biopic The Apprentice just premiered at the Cannes Film Festival — and the Trump campaign reportedly already has plans to take the filmmakers to court.

“We will be filing a lawsuit to address the blatantly false assertions from these pretend filmmakers,” Trump campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung said in a statement provided to Rolling Stone. “This garbage is pure fiction which sensationalizes lies that have been long debunked. As with the illegal Biden Trials, this is election interference by Hollywood elites, who know that President Trump will retake the White House and beat their candidate of choice because nothing they have done has worked.”

Sebastian Stan as Donald Trump in ‘The Apprentice’.

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Directed by Ali Abbasi, The Apprentice stars Sebastian Stan as the future 45th president in his early days navigating the world of New York real estate, where he’s mentored by Roy Cohn (Jeremy Strong). Early reviews of the film say that the project spans the early 1970s to the mid-1980s — and that it depicts Trump unflatteringly.

Reps for Abbasi, Stan, Strong, and screenwriter Gabriel Sherman did not immediately respond to Entertainment Weekly’s request for comment.

Donald Trump.

Bill Tompkins/Getty

Reviews out of Cannes highlighted scenes showing Trump receiving hair treatment for a bald spot, undergoing liposuction, and taking amphetamines. The most damaging sequence of the film, however, is one wherein the Donald character has possibly non-consensual sex with his wife Ivana (Maria Bakalova).

Ivana Trump described the alleged encounter in a 1993 statement. “As a woman I felt violated … I referred to this as a rape, but I do not want my words to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense,” she said. However, she later recanted that account before her death in 2022. (In 2023, Trump was found liable for sexually abusing E. Jean Carroll.)

“This ‘film’ is pure malicious defamation, should not see the light of day, and doesn’t even deserve a place in the straight-to-DVD section of a bargain bin at a soon-to-be-closed discount movie store, it belongs in a dumpster fire,” Cheung continued in his statement to the outlet.

The Apprentice does not yet have a U.S. release date.

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