At the 90th Annual Academy Awards on Sunday night, Kobe Bryant stunned the room (and possibly himself) when his animated short, Dear Basketball, won the Oscar. Although his victory was met by great celebration by people on social media, mentions of his past rape allegations stirred intense debates on whether or not he is deserving of the award.
Right now, the country is deeply rooted in the steadily growing #MeToo and Time's Up movements. As Hollywood was seemingly hit the hardest by the allegations of sexual assault, the movements have been widely discussed during awards season. Casey Affleck, who was supposed to present the award for best supporting actress, backed out of the show amid his own accusations.
In the case of Kobe Bryant, the basketball star was arrested in 2003 after a 19-year-old accused him of rape. Throughout the entire case, Bryant said the sex was consensual. The case took several turns but ultimately the victim was paid a settlement and the charges were dropped, according to court documents.
Although the Bryant case was closed in court several years ago, they were brought back up the moment his name was read from the winning envelope.
(Photo: FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)