After 20 years of feeling silenced, Rose McGowan is finally telling her story.
Citizen Rose, the E! documentary that she’s executive produced and narrated, is truly haunting.
It’s a five part series and the first two-hour episode drops on Hayu tonight.
Throughout the documentary, McGowan talks directly to the camera, walking the audience through her messy childhood, her rise to fame, and her sudden downfall.
The 44-year-old actress talks candidly about her experience growing up in a cult. She was born into the cult Children of God, and she regularly describes her father as a cult leader who needed to be worshipped, a man who thought of himself as a god.
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Her father led the Italian chapter of the evangelical Christian group whose abuses were later well-documented.
The series follows McGowan as she visits her family for Thanksgiving, has an emotional confrontation with her mother about her assault, and spends time at her father’s grave.
The Charmed star talks about her early career before moving onto the topic of her own alleged sexual assault at the hands of Harvey Weinstein.
Although McGowan speaks openly about her assault throughout the documentary and regularly refers to Weinstein, she never mentions him by name.
McGowan simply refers to him as “the monster”. The series also blacks out his name in written text and distorts it when others say it.
And, in a way, it only makes it louder.
The most haunting moment in the documentary comes when McGowan talks about that day in 1997 when the sexual assault allegedly occurred.
On that day, she tells the camera, she was being followed by an MTV film crew for a segment on the channel called Rose McGowan: A Day in the Life. There’s a clip from the segment that shows her walking through a door on her way to meet with Weinstein.
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McGowan says at this point, excited and hopeful for the future, she turned to camera and said, “I think my life is finally getting easier.”
She then walked through the door. Waiting on the other side of that door was Weinstein and what happened next would change her life forever.
In the documentary McGowan becomes emotional as she tells the camera she believes she jinxed herself that day. She wishes she’d never been so confident, that she had never claimed her life was “finally getting easier.”
“I thought ‘Goddammit, I jinxed myself, goddammit Rose,” she says in the documentary.
“It’s been a really lonely road and everyone treated me like dirt while I get to turn on the TV and see Gwyneth Paltrow giving him humanitarian awards,” she goes on to explain.
“I open the paper and there’s his face. I go to the movies, there’s his name.”
Despite finally having her voice heard, McGowan admits those words and that day continues to haunt her over 20 years later.
And that haunting will never end.
The first episode of the six-part documentary drops on Hayu tonight.
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