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Did Desperate Housewives' Creator Deck Nicollette Sheridan?

desperate housewives, nicollette Sheridan, Marc Cherry

Nicollette Sheridan has nothing but lemons for Marc Cherry.

Edie Britt is long gone, but the actress who played her just sued ABC and the creator of Desperate Housewives for $20 million for wrongful termination and assault, claiming Cherry smacked her in the face while on set and then arranged to have her fired (and not just fired, but killed off!) when she complained.

"While we have yet to see the actual complaint, we investigated similar claims made by Ms. Sheridan last year and found them to be without merit," a spokeswoman for ABC Studios said in a statement to E! News.

Nevertheless, the allegations behind this feud certainly sound worthy of the most twisted of prime-time soaps...

According to Sheridan's lawsuit, filed Monday in Los Angeles Superior Court, Cherry created a hostile work environment for the cast and crew from day one.

And during the fifth season, when all the talk about her character being killed off began, Cherry made things particularly rough on Sheridan, she claims.

View the lawsuit

In a private meeting in August 2008, Cherry apologized for his behavior, the suit states, but afterward "he continued to lash out at Sheridan and to behave in a rude and degrading manner toward her."

Then, on Sept. 28, 2008, when Sheridan questioned Cherry about a line in the script, he "took her aside and forcefully hit her with his hand across her face and head," the suit states.

Per the complaint, after a "humiliated and stunned" Sheridan took off for her dressing room, Cherry followed her to, "as he put it, 'beg forgiveness.'"

The actress says she reported him to ABC, but the awful treatment continued and, in February 2009, she found out that her character was being killed off.

"It is exceptionally unusual for a popular character to be killed off or written out of a television series unless the actor has requested to be released from his or her contract," is how Sheridan's lawyer sees it.

Claiming that Cherry and ABC were out to punish her for her outspokenness, Sheridan is alleging 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.

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While we're now more curious about what's going on behind the scenes of our favorite shows, it's still cool to get a glimpse of what's coming up on camera in our Spoiler Stills: TV gallery.

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