Ellen Page has accused X-Men: The Last Stand director Brett Ratner of outing her as gay when she was 18 on the set of the blockbuster.
In a lengthy Facebook post, Page, 30, detailed her alleged experience with Ratner, claiming he told another woman to have sex with her in order to “make her realize she’s gay” during a cast meet and greet for X-Men: The Last Stand in 2005.
“I was a young adult who had not yet come out to myself. I knew I was gay, but did not know, so to speak,” she wrote. “I felt violated when this happened. I looked down at my feet, didn’t say a word and watched as no one else did either. This man, who had cast me in the film, started our months of filming at a work event with this horrific, unchallenged plea. He ‘outed’ me with no regard for my well-being, an act we all recognize as homophobic.”
Page’s costar Anna Paquin corroborated the actress’ story on Twitter, writing, “I was there when that comment was made. I stand with you.”
In 2014, Page came out as gay at a Human Rights Campaign event in a rousing speech that earned her a standing ovation. The actress said she was ready to come out in hopes that her experience would help other people struggling with their sexuality.
Page said the “public outing” left her with feelings of shame about her sexuality.
“Making someone feel ashamed of who they are is a cruel manipulation, designed to oppress and repress,” she said. “I was robbed of more than autonomy over my ability to define myself.”
Ratner was last criticized for what many deemed homophobic behavior when he jokingly answered that “rehearsing [with his actors] is for fags” during a post-screening Q&A of his movie Tower Heist. After initially apologizing for his remarks, Ratner stepped down from producing the 2011 Oscars.
In her Facebook post, Page also said she was once “reprimanded” for standing up to Ratner when he asked her to wear a shirt that featured the slogan “Team Ratner” across the front.
“I was being reprimanded, yet he was not being punished nor fired for the blatantly homophobic and abusive behavior we all witnessed. I was an actor that no one knew,” she wrote. “I was eighteen and had no tools to know how to handle the situation.”
Along with her own alleged experience, Page said she witnessed Ratner “say degrading things to women,” on the set of X-Men: The Last Stand.
The actress said her experience with Ratner stuck with her for several years and haunted her as she tried to come to terms with her sexuality. But now that she’s comfortable in her own skin, Page said, “I can now assert myself and use my voice to fight back against the insidious queer and transphobic attitude in Hollywood and beyond.”
“Hopefully having the position I have, I can help people who may be struggling to be accepted and allowed to be who they are –to thrive. Vulnerable young people without my advantages are so often diminished and made to feel they have no options for living the life they were meant to joyously lead.”
In the post, Page also said a director “fondled her leg” under the table during a dinner meeting when she was just 16 and asked her to “make the move.”
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“It was a painful realization: my safety was not guaranteed at work. An adult authority figure for whom I worked intended to exploit me, physically.”
She also said she was sexually assaulted by a grip and was asked by yet another director to sleep with him.
“This is just what happened during my sixteenth year, a teenager in the entertainment industry,” she wrote.
Several other women, including Olivia Munn and Natasha Henstridge, have alleged harassment by Ratner.
In an article published by the Los Angeles Times, six women spoke out against the longtime Hollywood power player, 48, who directed the Rush Hour series and produced movies including Horrible Bosses and The Revenant.
In a statement to the L.A. Times, Ratner’s attorney Martin Singer vehemently disputed the specific allegations and said “no woman has ever made a claim against him for sexual misconduct or sexual harassment. Furthermore, no woman has ever requested or received any financial settlement from my client.”