The attack was notably omitted from 2015 NWA biopic Straight Outta Compton.
Dr. Dre has confronted his 1991 assault on journalist Dee Barnes in new HBO documentary series The Defiant Ones, describing the violent attack as “a major blemish on who I am as a man.”
The Ice Cube and Dre-produced 2015 N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton was criticized for failing to address Dre’s assault on Barnes, as well as allegations that the US rapper assaulted other women, including ex-fiancée Michel’le.
Barnes – who is featured in The Defiant Ones – first revealed the assault to Rolling Stone in 1991, in which she claimed that Dr. Dre “picked her up” and “began slamming her face and the right side of her body repeatedly against a wall near the stairway” at an LA nightclub. The rapper pleaded no contest to misdemeanor battery and Barnes reportedly sued for $22 million, with the case being settled out of court.
According to TMZ, in the second part of the HBO series, which documents Dre’s relationship with Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine, Dre discusses his history of violence towards women. “Any man that puts his hands on a female is a fucking idiot,” he says. “He’s out of his fucking mind, and I was out of my fucking mind at the time. I fucked up, I paid for it, I’m sorry for it, I apologize for it.”
He continues: “I have this dark cloud that follows me and it’s going to be attached to me forever. It’s a major blemish on who I am as a man.”
Following the release of Straight Outta Compton in 2015, Dre issued a public apology to the women he assaulted. “I apologize to the women I’ve hurt. I deeply regret what I did and know that it has forever impacted all of our lives,” he wrote in the New York Times.
However, his apology was labelled “insecure” by Michel’le who dismissed it as “good PR.” Barnes also commented on the apology at the time, writing a piece for Gawker in which she said: “The hypocrisy of it all is appalling. This is bigger than me, and bigger than hip-hop. This is about respect and awareness.”