The 24-year-old woman, who was the victim of abuse when she was 14, says it's "incredibly empowering" to be recognized by the actress.
Olivia Munn just got a heartfelt thank you from the victim of the sex offender the actress got cut from "The Predator" ahead of its theatrical release this weekend.
"I am also eternally grateful for Olivia Munn's action. She spoke up for me. She took a stance for me. In turn she stood for all who have suffered like I have," wrote the Paige Carnes in a statement to The Los Angeles Times. "To be acknowledged by a stranger, on a public platform about this issue is incredibly empowering."
The 24-year-old woman was previously only identified as Jane Doe in the court proceedings for the criminal case against Steven Wilder Striegel, a friend of filmmaker Shane Black, who directed "The Predator" and cast the sex offender. Striegel had been convicted of luring Carnes into a sexual relationship online when she was just 14 years old.
"The positive feedback from social media towards Olivia Munn is uplifting and feels incredibly supportive for me personally. I have no shame for what was done to me. I am not the one who needs to carry that shame," she continued. "My name is Paige Carnes, former Jane Doe. I hope anyone who has suffered like I have regains their voice and their humanity."
Munn was the driving force behind alerting the studio, 20th Century Fox, and her co-stars about Striegel's criminal history after being tipped off by an acquaintance. After demanding that his one scene -- opposite Munn -- was cut from the picture, Munn said she felt "iced out" by her co-stars amid the media frenzy over revelation, which emerged last week.
"When I spoke out and gave a statement to the LA Times, they asked the rest of my cast. I was the only one that did give a statement. I had no idea how bad the details of that case were. What happened to that girl until it came out in the LA Times on Thursday," she said on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" earlier this week. "The reality is the people who collude to keep people like this in positions of power that's the real problem. My cast members -- nobody said anything to me about it. Nobody talked to me. Nobody reached out –- that whole day."
"And then at first I thought maybe it’s just they don’t know what to say, they want to stay out of the way, but privately I felt iced out," she continued. "And I think that’s what’s really important for people to understand is that when you see something you have to say something. However, it’s not going to be easy."
"And there will be people that just get mad at you for not playing the game," she added. "Especially when it's -– I think people expected me to be quiet because it's my movie. The truth is I don't care. I don't care if this movie gave me all the money in the world and all the power. If it costs one person's life, they can take it. I don’t want this career."
Her co-star Sterling K. Brown ("This Is Us") also spoke out publicly and apologized to Munn for hesitating. "I'm sorry you’re feeling so isolated, my dear. And I’m sorry you’ve been the only one to speak up publicly," he tweeted. "We all have the right to know who we’re working with! And when someone has been convicted of a crime of a sexual nature involving a child, we have the right to say that’s not okay!"
At the movie's Los Angeles premiere on Wednesday, Black apologized for the casting decision and recognized that the PR disaster overshadowed his cast and crew's accomplishment.
"I was the captain of that ship. It's my job to make sure those things don't happen, and I failed," he told The Associated Press. "And I did cause pain to people in the cast. That's unacceptable. I take full responsibility. I'm very deeply sorry. I think about this a lot. I hope I learn from this, because it really bothers me that this movie, which could have been this beautiful people and this beautiful night with only this, has been overshadowed in some ways by a stupid decision that I made. I'm very sorry to anybody."
Read Carnes' entire statement below:
My purpose in making this statement is to reclaim my identity.
Sexual abuse makes people uncomfortable. It should make you uncomfortable. This discomfort is nothing compared to the psychological and physical suffering of those who have dealt with it.
I was not able to speak for myself when I was 14. The consequences of this abuse are profound and permanent for some. When the abuse takes place with a child, it is even harder to overcome. You lose trust in everyone around you, and mainly yourself. Your abuse does not define you. With support from others and strength from within, you can overcome the label of victim and reclaim your identity. Support can come in many forms. Sometimes all it takes is one person speaking up for you, acknowledging your worth as a human being. I am extremely fortunate to have a Father and Mother that love me unconditionally. My Father has supported me in my healing and growth in ways I cannot thank him enough for.
I am also eternally grateful for Olivia Munn’s action. She spoke up for me. She took a stance for me. In turn she stood for all who have suffered like I have. To be acknowledged by a stranger, on a public platform about this issue is incredibly empowering. The positive feedback from social media towards Olivia Munn is uplifting and feels incredibly supportive for me personally.
I have no shame for what was done to me. I am not the one who needs to carry that shame. My name is Paige Carnes, former Jane Doe.
I hope anyone who has suffered like I have regains their voice and their humanity.