If you’re looking for something really inspiring and moving, to watch tune into E!’s new documentary Citizen Rose which premiered last night. It’s the first instalment of a 5 part series (the rest to air later this Spring) about Charmed actress Rose McGowan, who was one of the first actresses to publicly accuse Harvey Weinstein of rape- in 1997 he allegedly cornered her in a jacuzzi at Sundance.
“I felt so dirty. I had been so violated and I was sad to the core of my being. I kept thinking about how he’d been sitting behind me in the theatre the night before it happened. Which made it – not my responsibility, exactly, but – like I had had a hand in tempting him,” she wrote. “Which made it even sicker and made me feel dirtier.”
Describing Weinstein as looking like “a melted pineapple”, McGowan said that immediately after the rape, she attended a photo opportunity for Phantom, a Miramax film she was in, where she allegedly told a co-star what happened. The co-star, who has previously been identified by McGowan as Ben Affleck, reportedly said: “Goddamnit. I told him to stop doing that.” Affleck has never responded to this allegation.
Timed to coincide with the release of her book Brave, which is just that, both book and film are really raw and honest. McGowan’s pain is palpable, as is her strength. You might not expect it from E! but the show hits hard, and comes off feeling more like an indie documentary than a red carpet fairytale gone wrong. Footage of other victims of abuse is deeply moving and interviews with Woody Allen’s crusading son Ronan, who first broke the Weinstein scandal in The New York Times are fascinating, lending the production gravitas.
Even though we’re all #MeToo aware, Rose’s book/film duo adds layers of detail- and humanity- to what we know and think we know. She is one woman for one woman.