On Saturday (Aug. 27), actor turned director Nate Parker broke his silence on his 1999 rape case in Ebony magazine. For those unfamiliar with the controversy surrounding Parker, the actor, along with his friend Jean Celestin,was charged with raping an 18-year old female student while he was an undergrad at Penn State in 1999. It was eventually revealed that his rape accuser committed suicide in 2012. However, word of her death didn’t gain coverage until promotion for Parker’s latest film, Birth Of A Nation (which was co-written by Celestin), putting the acclaimed movie under much scrutiny.
In his interview with Ebony, Parker expresses his regrets over the previous comments he made, calling them a “standpoint of ignorance.” The actor also discusses the topic of consent. “When I think about 1999, I think about being a 19-year-old kid, and I think about my attitude and behavior just toward women with respect objectifying them. I never thought about consent as a definition, especially as I do now. I think the definitions of so many things have changed.”