Some fans are calling for the boycott of West Side Story, which features Ansel Elgort as the lead. The actor was accused of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl in 2014 on June 19. Though Heavy reached out to Elgort, he didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Following the accusation, which was made by a Twitter user named Gabby, some fans said they would boycott Steven Spielberg’s remake of West Side Story, which was slated to debut in theaters in December 2020. Elgort plays the lead, Tony, in the film. Some people said Speilberg has time to replace Elgort, others quipped that the director could replace Elgort with Christopher Plummer or that they rather watch the version Cher did for TV where she played all the roles.
Elgort’s ‘West Side Story’ Co-Stars Didn’t Immediately Respond
A bigger conversation people were having is how boycotting the film would affect the people of color and latinx actors who participated in the film. Notably, West Side Story was the debut for Latina actor Rachel Zegler, who landed the role of Maria. She didn’t tweet about Elgort’s allegations and didn’t immediately respond to Heavys request for comment. On Twitter, her bio reads: “maría, to steven spielberg. latina actor. artist. activist. also a jedi. she/her. black lives matter. BELIEVE SURVIVORS.”
She’s an advocate for the Black Lives Matter movement, where she most recently tweeted about not using the N-word. “IT IS NOT A JOKE. DO NOT SING IT OR RAP IT OR SAY IT IF YOU ARE NOT BLACK. IT IS A WORD RECLAIMED BY A COMMUNITY THAT CONTINUES TO BE TARGETED. AND -WE- ARE THE PROBLEM. I REPEAT: DO NOT USE THE N-WORD IF YOU ARE NOT BLACK,” she wrote on June 18, garnering more than 25,000 likes.
Elgort’s Accuser Said She Was ‘Sobbing From Pain’
Gabby, who didn’t reveal her last name, wanted other people to know they weren’t alone. “It’s a lot for me to post this but I think it’s time I finally talk about my story of me being sexually assaulted,” she tweeted.
Gabby met the Baby Driver actor in December 2014 days after she turned 17. “He knew what he was doing. I’m not posting this to ‘clout chase’ because I simply don’t care for that. I’m posting this so I can finally heal and I know I’m not alone and he’s done this to other girls,” she wrote. “Ansel Elgort sexually assaulted me when I was 17.”
I didn’t think he’d ever see my dm I was just a kid and was a fan of him. So when it happened instead of asking me if I wanted to stop having sex knowing it was my first time and I was sobbing in pain and I didn’t want to do it the only words that came out of his mouth were, ‘We need to break you in.’ I WASNT there in that moment mentally. I dissociated myself and just felt like my mind was gone and I was in shock.
After her allegation started to go viral, Gabby said other women reached out to her with similar stories about Elgort. “So many of you have dmed me your stories whether that’s with him or just in general,” she wrote. “This is the reason why I tweeted what I did. I’m crying at work I’m so fucking thankful for you all. You’re not alone.”