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Nate Parker’s ‘Birth of a Nation’ to Hold Press Conference at Toronto Film Festival

Nate Parker Rape Case Interview Variety
Matt Sayles/Invision/AP

Fox Searchlight announced Wednesday that it will hold a “The Birth of a Nation” junket and press conference at this year’s Toronto Film Festival with writer/actor/director  Nate Parker in attendance.

The announcement comes days after Parker broke his silence regarding a case in 1999 where he was charged with raping a 18-year-old female student while attending Penn State. Parker was acquitted in a 2001 trial. Variety reported that the female student had died by suicide in 2012.

“I was acting as if I was the victim, and that’s wrong,” he told Ebony magazine in an interview published on Saturday. “I was acting as if I was the victim because I felt like, my only thought was I’m innocent and everyone needs to know. I didn’t even think for a second about her, not even for a second.”

Later in the interview, Parker expressed shock over the suicide, saying, “learning about her passing shook me, it really did. It really shook me.” The father of five daughters also said his attitude towards women and consent have changed. “All I can do is seek the information that’ll make me stronger, that’ll help me overcome my toxic masculinity, my male privilege, because that’s something you never think about,” he said.

Parker and the “Birth of  a Nation” cast will face the press in a video junket on Sept. 10, a day after the film bows at the festival. A press conference is scheduled for Sept. 11.

It’s unknown what additional press Parker will do at TIFF. AFI cancelled a planned screening and Q&A for”The Birth of a Nation” on August 26.

Fox Searchlight acquired “Birth of a Nation” for a record $17.5 million after it premiered at Sundance in January. The movie tells the story of slave rebellion leader Nat Turner, played by Parker. It’s schedule to open wide on October 7, 2016.