Activists hold 'Birth of a Nation' vigil

Review: 'Birth of a Nation' struggles to escape controversy
Review: 'Birth of a Nation' struggles to escape controversy

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Story highlights

  • The film opens Friday
  • Organizer says she will not support film

(CNN)A group of anti-rape activists held a candlelight vigil on the eve of the release of "The Birth of a Nation."

The organization F**k Rape Culture held a silent sit-in Thursday outside the Arclight Hollywood Cinemas in Los Angeles.
    "Birth of a Nation" star Nate Parker was accused of sexual assault in 1999 while a student at Penn State. He was acquitted in a subsequent trial.
    His accuser committed suicide in 2012.
    Elyse Cizek was listed as an actor/organizer of the vigil in a posting on the organization's Facebook page. In the posting she explained why she would not be supporting the film, which opens Friday.
    "Nate Parker and Fox Searchlight, I am your audience," the posting said. "I refuse to give you my money or my praise for this film. I refuse to support a project that insists on treating me and other survivors of rape as plot accessories. I refuse to have my story written and glorified for the advancement of a man who refuses to support my right to exist of my own truth."
    FRC founder Remy Holwick told Variety the event was not meant "to shame Nate Parker or shame the film."
    "The goal tonight is to show that there is space in Hollywood to both celebrate a film that has incredible promise for people of color advancing in Hollywood while simultaneously creating space for those that wish to honor victims of rape and sexual assault," Holwick said.