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Writers Sound Off About Litigious ‘SEAL Team’ Staffer Who Claims He Lost Gig Because He Was White & Male

A lawsuit filed by a SEAL Team script coordinator and freelancer who claims he was denied a writing position because he’s a straight white guy has already struck a chord with fellow scribes.

Many took to X to express their frustration with freelance scribe Brian Beneker, who says in the complaint that he suffered by not being part of “the favored hiring groups; that is, they were nonwhite, LGBTQ, or female.” He also called out the “illegal policy” of diversity, equity and inclusion measures.

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Beneker, who has worked on SEAL Team since 2017 and before that was a script coordinator on Sons of Anarchy, claims in 2019 that he questioned current showrunner Spencer Hudnut over why previous showrunner John Glenn had hired a new male writer when Glenn claimed at the time that “there were already too many staff writers and there was no room for CBS to hire [Beneker].”

“Hudnut indicated it was because he was Black,” the complaint says.

While continuing his job as script coordinator, Beneker wrote three episodes of the David Boreanaz-led series in 2019. He has another one supposedly set to air as the eighth episode of the series’ upcoming seventh and final season. His suit is backed by former Trump White House advisor Stephen Miller’s nonprofit America First Legal Foundation.

Many writers called Beneker’s bluff by either citing UCLA’s annual Hollywood diversity report, or calling out his past performance.

“I worked with this guy in 2000–I was a writer, he was a script coordinator and a seriously odd duck THEN,” wrote Jorge A. Reyes (Queen of the South) on X. “He thinks never gotten a staff writer job in 24 years because he’s white? …. Now, in an effort to not face that truth, he links up with Trump’s Minister of Information in a bullshit crybaby-ass lawsuit whose only real purpose is as a cudgel against still-underrepresented groups who STILL hold historically low numbers of the available jobs here.”

“As a woman of color, I know that many people see me and automatically think ‘unqualified for the job’; until I can prove otherwise,” wrote Helen Shang (13 Reasons Why). “You’re not the default. We doubt you. So justify yourself. It’s the boulder that I and others continue to have to push.”

Adds The Black List founder Franklin Leonard, “There’s a lot of genuinely hilarious stuff here, but seeking a court order to make you a full time producer on the show you’ve been script coordinating is truly incredible stuff.”

Beneker is seeking $500,000 in alleged lost wages, and “an injunction requiring defendants to offer plaintiff a full-time job as a producer.” Click to read Beneker’s discrimination lawsuit, which was filed last week in U.S. District Court in California.

Here’s a sampling of more X posts from Hollywood writers/staffers:

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