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Ellen Page says director Brett Ratner crudely outed her as gay at a meet and greet for the cast and crew of "X-Men: The Last Stand" when she was 18 years old. She also says making a Woody Allen movie is the biggest regret of her career in an industry where inappropriate sexual behavior is "ubiquitous."
The Oscar nominee, who came out publicly as a lesbian in 2014, said Friday on Facebook that the director made a profane comment suggesting a woman 10 years her senior — who was standing right there — have sex with Page "to make her realize she’s gay."
At the time, the "Juno" actress, now 30, had not yet come out even to herself, she said.
"I knew I was gay, but did not know, so to speak. 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." The "public, aggressive outing" left her with "long standing feelings of shame, one of the most destructive results of homophobia," she wrote.
Ratner's attorney did not respond immediately Friday to a request for comment. Last week, six women accused the director of sexual harassment; Ratner's attorney disputed those accounts in a 10-page letter to The Times. Beverly Hills police investigated Ratner and music mogul Russell Simmons in 2001 after a woman said she was a victim of sexual battery, but the L.A. County district attorney's office found insufficient evidence to press charges.
Page, a professional actor since age 10, also recounted incidents of inappropriate sexual behavior she experienced when she was 16. Contextualizing the incidents as part of what she called ubiquitous behavior in the industry, the actress didn't name names but began by talking about a director who took her to dinner, ostensibly to talk business.
"He fondled my leg under the table and said, 'You have to make the move, I can't.' I did not make the move, and I was fortunate to get away from that situation," the "Flatliners" star wrote. "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. I was sexually assaulted by a grip months later. I was asked by a director to sleep with a man in his late twenties and to tell them about it. I did not."
Page said she was ashamed she made the 2012 movie "To Rome With Love." She had yet to find her voice, she said, and felt pressured because "of course you have to say yes" to working with Woody Allen, who has been accused over the years of inappropriate sexual behavior.
"Ultimately, however, it is my choice what films I decide to do and I made the wrong choice. I made an awful mistake," Page said.
In her Facebook post, which uses blunt language, Page called for men who have abused others from positions of power to be held accountable for their behavior, and for what she called a self-perpetuating status quo to end.
"I want them to sit and think about who they are without their lawyers, their millions, their fancy cars, houses upon houses, their 'playboy' status and swagger," she wrote.
"What I want the most, is for this to result in healing for the victims. For Hollywood to wake up and start taking some responsibility for how we all have played a role in this. I want us to reflect on this endemic issue and how this power dynamic of abuse leads to an enormous amount of suffering."