X-Men: The Last Stand star Ellen Page is alleging director Brett Ratner outed her as gay in a particularly vile way, during the film's production. This is just the latest in a string of recent allegations of highly inappropriate conduct against Ratner.
Page played the mutant Kitty Pryde in two X-Men films, the first being X-Men: The Last Stand, which was the third film in the series. Ratner was a last minute replacement for Bryan Singer, director of the first two X-Men films, who abruptly departed to direct Superman Returns. While his films have generally been reliable box office performers, rumblings of his inappropriate behavior have been around for years. In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, several women - including actresses Natasha Henstridge and Olivia Munn - publicly accused Ratner of sexual misconduct.
Page is the latest high profile actress to detail Ratner's abuse. In a lengthy Facebook post, Page details how Ratner made highly inappropriate comments to her about her sexuality. You can read the post in full below.
The entire post is worth reading, but the incident that Page details took place during the film's production, when Page was 18 years old and had not yet fully grappled with her own sexuality:
“You should fuck her to make her realize she’s gay.” He said this about me during a cast and crew “meet and greet” before we began filming, X Men: The Last Stand. I was eighteen years old. He looked at a woman standing next to me, ten years my senior, pointed to me and said: “You should fuck her to make her realize she’s gay.” 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. I felt violated when this happened.
Page goes on to detail how there were no repercussions for Ratner's behavior and, when she was unwilling to playfully interact with him during the film's production, she was admonished by producers:
I got into an altercation with Brett at a certain point. He was pressuring me, in front of many people, to don a t-shirt with “Team Ratner” on it. I said no and he insisted. I responded, “I am not on your team.” Later in the day, producers of the film came to my trailer to say that I “couldn’t talk like that to him.” 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. I was eighteen and had no tools to know how to handle the situation.
This is yet another distressing, if unsurprising, example of powerful men using their stature to sexually abuse and demean those without power. Reports of Ratner's transgressions join a long list of recently revealed offenders. House of Cards star Kevin Spacey has been accused of sexually assaulting and harassing multiple people, including Star Trek: Discovery actor Anthony Rapp when he was 14 years old; House of Cards fired the actor, and he's being cut out of the upcoming film All The Money In The World. Just yesterday, years of rumors about sexual misconduct by Louis CK were confirmed by a New York Times report where several women recounted their encounters with the widely lauded comedian, resulting in the shelving of his upcoming film I Love You, Daddy and HBO severing ties with him.
It's unclear at this point what consequences Ratner may face, but it's unquestionably a positive development that people like Page now feel they can make public the transgressions of powerful men like him.