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Lee Daniels Slams Sean Penn in New Legal Filing: 'Spicoli Understands the U.S. Constitution Better'

by Sophie Schillaci 3:06 PM PST, February 02, 2016
Photo: Getty Images

Lee Daniels is once again firing back at Sean Penn.

Legal reps for the Empire co-creator have filed new docs that move to strike and dismiss Penn's defamation suit against him, citing First Amendment protections.

READ: Lee Daniels' First Motion to Dismiss Sean Penn's Lawsuit – 'The First Amendment Is Not for Sale'

In what could otherwise be considered a lengthy document filled with legal jargon, Daniels' counsel managed to slip in a humorous jab aimed at Penn's iconic Fast Times at Ridgemont High character, Jeff Spicoli.

"Spicoli understands the United States Constitution better than Penn," one footnote reads. "For his final, oral exam in high school history class, surfer-dude Spicoli expounds upon the intent of America's founding fathers: 'What Jefferson was saying was, 'Hey! You know. We left this England place because it was bogus. So if we don't get some cool rules ourselves – Pronto! – we'll just be bogus, too. Okay?'"

"To avoid being bogus, Jefferson and his contemporaries adopted the First Amendment, cherished protector of honest opinions and vigilant striker of lawsuits brought to punish and deter such opinions," the doc continues. "This 'cool rule' animates the California and New York laws that mandate dismissal of Penn's bogus claims."

The legal drama all began in September 2015 when Penn filed a $10 million defamation lawsuit against Daniels, claiming that the latter falsely equated him to Terrence Howard while discussing allegations of domestic violence.

WATCH: Madonna's Defense of Sean Penn Could Help Actor in Lee Daniels Court Battle

In December, Madonna -- who was married to Penn in the late 1980s -- came to her ex-husband's defense by filing official documents that state she was never physically assaulted by the Oscar winner during their four-year marriage.

"Sean has never struck me," she said in the sworn legal document. "Any report to the contrary is completely outrageous, malicious, reckless and false."

Daniels' legal team, led by James G. Sammataro, also addressed Madonna's statement in Tuesday's new filing.

"The Immaterial Girl's Declaration expresses Madonna's attitude toward the truth of the Challenged Statement as of October 7, 2015 (9,768 days after the media first reported that she was 'trussed up like a turkey' by Penn), but it says absolutely nothing about Daniels' attitude toward the truth or falsity of the Challenged Statement at the time he uttered his opinion. Only Daniels' attitude is relevant to assessing actual malice."

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