Filmmaker Alexander Payne has denied allegations that he "groomed" and sexually assaulted actress Rose McGowan when she was only 15 years old.
Instead, Payne insists that he and McGowan first started dating at the age of 18 and that they date a couple of times after failing an audition for his first directorial appearance.
The acclaimed director broke his silence on Friday – three weeks after McGowan accused him of "grooming" and having sex with her when she was a minor and he was 28 years old.
Payne released a statement on Deadline denying the allegations.
"Rose is wrong, we met when we were fifteen in the late 1980s," wrote Payne.
"I was a full-time film student at UCLA from 1984 to 1990, and I know our paths never crossed."
Oscar-winning Alexander Payne (left), 59, has denied Rose McGowan's (right), 46, claim that he raped the actress when she was only 15 years old
In a social media post last month, McGowan named Payne as the "well-endowed" man who supposedly "sat me down and played a softcore porn movie" when she was 15 – an incident she first described in 2018 without identifying Payne.
"If you are out there trying to have sex with an underage minor, you are committing a crime even if the minor does not know it," McGowan wrote in an Aug. 18 post on Instagram, "Bomb of Truth".
TEXT OF THE STATEMENT BY ALEXANDER PAYNE
Rose McGowan and I have always had very warm interactions, and I have admired her commitment to activism and her voice in an important historical movement.
However, what she has said about me in recent social media posts is just wrong.
Rose is mistakenly wrong that we met at the end of the eighties when we were fifteen.
I was a full-time film student at UCLA from 1984 to 1990 and I know our paths never crossed.
She claims I showed her a "softcore porn movie" that I made "under a different name" for Showtime.
This would have been impossible because I had never staged anything professional, garish or otherwise.
I also never worked for Showtime or directed it under any name other than my own.
Rose and I met years later, in 1991, during my first directing job, when she was auditioning for a comic short film I was making for a Playboy Channel series.
Although she didn't get the role, she left me a message at the casting desk asking me to call her.
I had no reason to question how old she was as the role she was reading for required an actor of legal age.
We went out on a few dates later and stayed friends for years.
While I cannot allow false statements about events twenty-nine years ago to remain uncorrected, I will continue to wish Rose all the best.
4th September 2020
“I was attracted to him so I thought it was me, but that's not right. I wasn't an adult. & # 39;
But Payne countered Friday that McGowan got her facts wrong.
“She claims I showed her a 'softcore porn movie' that I 'made for Showtime' under a different name,” writes Payne.
“That would have been impossible as I had never directed it professionally, garishly or in any other way.
"Neither have I ever worked for Showtime or directed under a name other than my own."
Payne then recalled the first time he and McGowan met and then briefly dated, though he found she was of legal age at the time.
He writes: “Rose and I met years later, in 1991, during my first directing job, when she was auditioning for a comic short film I was making for a Playboy Channel series.
“Even though she didn't get the role, she left me a message on the casting desk and asked me to call her.
“I had no reason to question how old she was, as the role she was reading required an actor of legal age.
"We went out a few times later and stayed friends for years."
Payne continued, "Although I cannot allow false statements about events twenty-nine years ago to go uncorrected, I will continue to wish Rose all the best."
When asked Friday to respond to Payne's refusal, McGowan said to Variety, "F *** him and his lies are my comment."
Before Friday, Payne, who co-wrote and directed the critically acclaimed films "Citizen Ruth", "Election", "About Schmidt", "Sideways" and "The Descendants", had not commented on the allegations.
McGowan – a pioneer of the #MeToo movement who became one of the first women to crack down on Harvey Weinstein – said the alleged ordeal led her to quit acting before returning to Hollywood after she "discovered" at the age of 21 " had been.
McGowan told Variety it was time to name Payne after telling Ronan Farrow in 2018 that she was the victim of a man who picked me up when I was 15.
McGowan made her first allegation on Twitter on August 17th, asking the director for "confirmation and apology."
& # 39; Alexander Payne. You sat me down and played a softcore porn movie that you made under a different name for Showtime, ”she said.
“I remember your apartment in Silverlake. They are very well equipped. You left me on a street corner after that. I was 15. & # 39;
McGowan made her allegations against Payne in a second Instagram post "Bomb of Truth" on August 18, after previously calling him on Twitter
She also tweeted a picture of herself at the age of 15 and said, “I just want confirmation and an apology. I don't want to destroy. & # 39;
Later that day, McGowan followed up with a lengthy Instagram post describing the alleged "care".
“For years I had thought that a man I had sexual relations with was a sexual experience I had. I know now that I was cared for, ”she said.
& # 39; I auditioned for him when I was 15. In my experience with him, I stopped trading completely until I was "discovered" at 21.
Who is Alexander Payne? The Oscar winner behind About Schmidt and The Descendants
Alexander Payne was born in Omaha in 1961 to his parents Peggy and George.
Payne co-wrote and directed the critically acclaimed films "Citizen Ruth," "Election," "About Schmidt," "Sideways" and "The Descendants". He also directed the movie & # 39; Nebraska & # 39; in 2013. and the recent science fiction satire & # 39; Downsizing & # 39 ;.
He was nominated for seven Academy Awards and won two Academy Awards for Best Adapted Screenplay for "Sideways" and "The Descendants".
& # 39; Sideways & # 39; was awarded the 2004 Golden Globe Award for best film musical or best comedy.
Payne graduated from Creighton Prep in Omaha and earned a bachelor's degree from Stanford University and a master's degree from the University of California at Los Angeles.
A third-generation Greek-American Payne married second wife, Maria Kontos, in 2015. The couple have one child who was born in 2017.
He was previously married to Killing Eve star Sandra Oh for two years. The couple split in 2005.
In 2018 he received an honorary doctorate in fine arts from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
“When that happened, I thought damn it, let's do this. I even tweeted congratulations on his Oscar win in 2012 for being so deep in the cult of Hollywood.
"It wasn't until three weeks after the Weinstein story was published that I reassessed the situation."
She continued, “I have a bad feeling about dropping a bomb on someone's life and career, but I think that's social conditioning.
“I'm more sad than angry. Sad for me as a 15 year old. Sad for the adult who still thought it was a decision I made.
& # 39; Care is real. I want you all to know that if you've been mentally massaged to think it's okay, it's not your fault. It is not. I know that now.
"I would even go to this director at events and ask him with a smile," Do you remember when you had sex with me when you were 15? "And I'd laugh at it. It's deep social programming.
“When it happened, a family member recently left me in Hollywood to take care of myself. The wolves hunted.
“Please realize that if this has happened to you, the shame is not yours, it is hers. Give it back. Snow groomers are skilled operators, and when I was 15 I wasn't aware of the warning signs. & # 39;
She concluded, “The Goddess bless us all except those who abuse her power. To freedom, yours and mine. & # 39;
The 46-year-old actress went on Twitter on Aug. 17, alleging that the 59-year-old Oscar winner was "very well endowed" and "left her on a street corner" after showing her the pornographic material
McGowan then posted a black and white headshot of himself as a teenager, adding, “I just want an acknowledgment and an apology. I don't want to destroy. That was me when I was 15. & # 39;
Payne and wife Maria Kontos attend a screening in Los Angeles in 2017.
Payne was previously married to Killing Eve star Sandra Oh for two years. The couple split in 2005
Payne later became famous for films such as Sideways (2004), Election (1999) and About Schmidt (2002).
It was reported in December last year that Payne was about to stage a remake of Babette's party. It is not known where these allegations left the project.
McGowan was an early face of the #MeToo movement in the fall of 2017 after accusing Harvey Weinstein of raping her.
In January 2018, she disclosed some details of the Payne allegation – but without identifying the director's name.
Speaking to Ronan Farrow, she said she was the victim of a man who "picked me up when I was 15".
"He took him home after he met me and he showed me a soft porn movie he did for Showtime under a different name," she said at the time.
"And then he had sex with me and then he left me standing on a street corner next to Cafe Tropicale in Silverlake."
McGowan hinted at the time that she would reveal the director's name when she was ready, having previously named Farrow.
# MeToo Movement: McGowan, 46, who was one of the leading activists in the global movement and who accused Harvey Weinstein of sexually assaulting her in the 1990s, has now announced that he believes she is "in a good place" ( shown together in) 2007)
Convicted: The disgraced film mogul, 68, was convicted in a landmark #MeToo case in March that saw six of his accusers sobbing and hugging from the front row of the courtroom (pictured in court on Feb. 24).
In May, McGowan said she was "now in a good place" as Weinstein was serving a 23-year prison sentence for rape and sexual assault.
The shamed movie mogul, 68, was convicted in March in a landmark #MeToo case that ended with six of his accusers sobbing and hugging from the front row of the courtroom.
Weinstein was convicted of raping an aspiring actress in 2013 and forcibly performing oral sex in a television and film production assistant in 2006.
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