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Dr. Dre threatens to sue Sony over Lifetime movie painting him as abusive

Photo: Christopher Polk / Getty Images

It’s been a rough few days on the internet, especially in terms of men facing (or refusing to face) their sexist, abusive behavior in the past. And, well, here’s another story to throw onto the pile. It may be cold comfort, but at least we can say this: This story isn’t going to ruin anything for you that hasn’t already been ruined. The domestic abuse allegations against Dr. Dre are already well-known.

So well known, in fact, that Lifetime made an upcoming TV movie, Surviving Compton: Dre, Suge, And Me, detailing one of those abusive relationships:

The film is a biopic of R&B singer Michel’le, who has maintained for years that Dr. Dre was violently abusive towards her during the course of her six-year relationship with the rapper/producer-turned-billionaire businessman. Dre hasn’t denied that he was abusive, either: During the press tour for Straight Outta Compton, he told Rolling Stone in an interview, “I would[n’t] say all the allegations aren’t true – some of them are. Those are some of the things that I would like to take back. It was really fucked up. But I paid for those mistakes, and there’s no way in hell that I will ever make another mistake like that again.”


But now, according to Pitchfork, Dre claims that he never abused Michel’le specifically. He says so in a letter to Sony Pictures, which is releasing Surviving Compton: “Dre flatly denies ever abusing Michel’le,” the letter reads, adding that Michel’le never sought medical treatment or went to the police for help during the relationship, a classic victim-blaming argument that we’re just too exhausted to unpack right now. The letter goes on to say that Dre and his lawyers will seek legal action if the movie is released.

As of now, Lifetime still plans to air Surviving Compton on October 15. And according to TMZ, Dre’s lawyers have warned Michel’le to back off as well. But, considering she didn’t accept Dre’s blanket apology for the way he had treated women that he released last summer, we suspect that she won’t be intimidated this time, either.


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