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Dr. Dre's Ex Explains Why His Abusive History Wasn't In 'Straight Outta Compton'
Since its release last Friday, Straight Outta Compton has been receiving rave reviews. Even Selma director Ava DuVernay tweeted out a love letter to the N.W.A. biopic over the weekend. As much as the film has been heralded for its depiction of South Central in the '90s, one thing was glossed over: former N.W.A. member Dr. Dre's abusive past.
When VLAD TV recently asked R&B singer Michel'le, who is Dr. Dre's ex-fiancee and the mother of their son, how she felt about not being depicted in the biopic, she clearly explained that it made no sense for her to be in it. "But why would Dre put me in it?" Michel'le asked. "I mean if they started from where they started from, I was just a quiet girlfriend who got beat up and told to sit down and shut up."
The 44-year-old singer also said the film was "[Ice] Cube's version of his life," not Dre's, so she understood why her six-year relationship with the rapper from 1990 to 1996 wasn't included in Straight Outta Compton.
Michel'le, who's also the star of TV One's reality series R&B Divas: Los Angeles, has been candid in the past about the abusive relationship. In a chat with Power 105.1 FM's "The Breakfast Club" in March, she described in detail the extent of her beatings. She revealed that Dre had broken her nose, and that he was one to punch with a closed fist. "I had five black eyes, I had a cracked rib, I have scars that are just amazing," Michel'le said.
She added: "When he gave me my very first black eye, we laid in the bed and cried. He was crying and I was crying because I was in shock, hurt and in pain. I don’t know why he was crying, but he said 'I’m really sorry.' That was the only time he ever said he was really sorry. And he said, 'I’ll never hit you in that eye again, okay?'"
Michel'le said she dealt with the pain through humor, and joked with friends that he kept his promise that he would never hit her in that eye again, but would hit her everywhere else.
But it wasn't just Michel'le whom Dre was accused of attacking. After TV journalist Dee Barnes from Pump It Up depicted beef between N.W.A. members on Fox' rap music video show, the rap group didn't think it painted their image favorably. At a record release party in January 1991, Dre ran into Barnes, which led to a vicious attack. The Rolling Stones reported:
According to a statement issued by Barnes, Dre picked her up and "began slamming her face and the right side of her body repeatedly against a wall near the stairway" as his bodyguard held off the crowd. After Dre tried to throw her down the stairs and failed, he began kicking her in the ribs and hands. She escaped and ran into the women's restroom. Dre followed her and "grabbed her from behind by the hair and proceeded to punch her in the back of the head." Finally, Dre and his bodyguard ran from the building.
At the time, Dre said, "People talk all this shit, but you know, somebody fucks with me, I'm gonna fuck with them. I just did it, you know. Ain't nothing you can do now by talking about it. Besides, it ain't no big thing - I just threw her through a door."
Barnes would later file a lawsuit against Dre and the other members of N.W.A. Dre pleaded no contest in August 1991 to misdemeanor battery in connection to Barnes' attack.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Dre addressed the abuse allegations involving Michel'le and Barnes:
"I made some fucking horrible mistakes in my life," says Dre. "I was young, fucking stupid. I would say all the allegations aren't true - some of them are. Those are some of the things that I would like to take back. It was really fucked up. But I paid for those mistakes, and there's no way in hell that I will ever make another mistake like that again.
Michel'le seems to have moved on from the whole situation, even saying that she's "absolutely going to watch" Straight Outta Compton. Although she doesn't speak to Dre, she says their 24-year-old son, who's a "great kid" and wants to score music now has a relationship with his father.