Rachel Zegler Issues Statement About Ansel Elgort Allegations

This article contains discussion of sexual assault.

In June 2020, a woman named Gabby posted claims of sexual assault to Twitter, specifically accusing a 20-year-old Ansel Elgort of assaulting her in 2014 when she was 17, according to USA Today. The note she shared on her since-deleted Twitter account explained that she was coming forward to "finally heal" and claimed knowing she is "not alone and he's done this to other girls." Elgort has denied these reports.

The connection started when Gabby DM'd the "Baby Driver" actor, sharing that she would be turning 17. She got access to his private snapchat account and he allegedly asked her for nude photos. In regards to the assault accusation, she wrote, per The Wrap, "instead of asking me if I wanted to stop having sex knowing it was my first time and I was sobbing in pain ... the only words that came out of his mouth were 'we need to break you in.'" She continued, "I didn't tell anyone because he said it could 'ruin his career.'"

Elgort quickly responded in a since-deleted Instagram statement, sharing his "distress" over the accusations. "I cannot claim to understand Gabby's feelings, but her description of events is simply not what happened. I have never and would never assault anyone." News on the matter has been fairly quiet, but with the release of Steven Spielberg's "West Side Story" in December, his co-stars, including Rachel Zegler, the Maria to his Tony, have been asked to comment.

Rachel Zegler adresses Ansel Elgort scandal

Although "West Side Story” was filmed before the allegations against Ansel Elgort were posted, many were curious of his co-star Rachel Zegler's take on the matter. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Zegler, Rita Moreno, and Ariana DeBose shared their experiences on making the latest film adaptation. When asked to comment on Elgort — starring as Tony in the film — the actors were respectful of the issue and chose their words carefully. 

"We made a movie two and a half years ago, and a lot has gone on in the world since then," Zegler stated. "A lot has changed very publicly, and privately as well. There's been a lot of awakening. You just hope that the people involved are okay, that they are asked in a respectful manner and that they are given the opportunity to answer for themselves."

In Elgort's statement denying the accusations, he said, per ET, "Gabby and I had a brief, legal and entirely consensual relationship." The actor admitted to not handling their breakup well, essentially ghosting her and acknowledging it was "an immature and cruel thing to do." He has done press for "West Side Story," but has been absent from feature profiles, cover stories, and other in-depth interviews, according to Variety. It seems that all parties will continue to tread lightly when discussing the topic. 

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).