Hollywood executive Jill Messick, who was also Rose McGowan‘s former manager, died by suicide on Wednesday aged 50. In the wake of her death, her family has released a scathing statement, criticising both McGowan and Harvey Weinstein.
Messick, who has been described as “instrumental” in getting Mean Girls to the screen, was the actress’ manager at the time of her alleged rape at the hands of Weinstein in 1997. In November that year, Messick took a job as an executive with Miramax Films.
Just weeks ago, Messick was the subject of news stories that reported on an apparent email she had sent defending Weinstein. Her family claimed The Hollywood Reporter these reports carried “mistruths” about their loved one, who suffered from bipolar disorder and depression.
“Jill was victimised by our new culture of unlimited information sharing and a willingness to accept statement as fact,” they said. “The speed of disseminating information has carried mistruths about Jill as a person, which she was unable and unwilling to challenge. She became collateral damage in an already horrific story.”
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The family said the mum-of-two also chose not to defend herself when McGowan publically criticised her.
“Over the past few months, many women have come out with allegations against Harvey Weinstein, including Rose McGowan, who has repeatedly spoken with the press, striking out against not only her alleged attacker, but a great many others,” the family stated.
“One of them was Jill, who chose to remain silent in the face of Rose’s slanderous statements against her for fear of undermining the many individuals who came forward in truth.”
You can read the family’s full statement on The Hollywood Reporter.