Asia Argento Accuses 'xXx' Director Rob Cohen of Sexual Assault (Report)

Asia Argento - on stage during the Closing Ceremony at the 71st annual Cannes Film Festival - Getty-H 2018
Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

In an interview with an Italian newspaper, Argento said that while filming the 2002 film opposite Vin Diesel, Cohen abused her. 

Italian actress Asia Argento has accused The Fast and the Furious and xXx director Rob Cohen of sexual assault.

In an interview with Italian newspaper Il Corriere della SeraArgento said that while filming the 2002 film xXx opposite Vin Diesel, Cohen abused her.

"It’s the first time I’m talking about Cohen," Argento told the outlet. "He abused me by making me drink GHB, he had a bottle of it," she said, referring to the anesthetic commonly referred to as the date rape drug. "At the time, I honestly didn't know what it was. I woke up in the morning naked in his bed."

She noted that her accusations against Cohen will be detailed in her upcoming autobiography Anatomy of a Wild Heart, which will be released in Italy on Jan. 26. Argento was one of the first to publicly accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault.

The Hollywood Reporter reached out to Argento for comment.

A rep for Cohen told THR, "Mr. Cohen categorically denies Asia Argento’s accusation of assault against him as absolutely false. When they worked together, they had an excellent working relationship and Mr. Cohen considered her a friend, so this claim dating back to 2002 is bewildering, especially given what has been reported about her in recent years."

Argento's allegations against Cohen are not the first time the director has been at the center of accusations. Cohen was accused of sexual assault, according to a 2019 Huffington Post report, by an alleged victim given the name "Jane" to protect her anonymity. The alleged victim says the helmer assaulted her in 2015 when she was unconscious. The reported assault took place after Cohen invited Jane to a business meeting in Manhattan to discuss collaborating on a TV pilot.

Cohen’s lawyer Martin Singer responded to the accusations, writing to HuffPost in a 13-page letter: "The proposed story is an outrageous defamatory hit piece, making extraordinarily offensive assertions that my client engaged in heinous sexual misconduct, criminal wrongdoing, and other inappropriate behavior, which are vehemently disputed and denied by my client."

In 2019, the eldest child of the director accused him of sexual assault in a public Facebook post. In an interview with THR, Valkyrie Weather said she mostly remembered the pain, "the memory of the place and time, just being there, in the bath" and said, "it was so painful that I couldn't verbalize it for a long time." She also disclosed that her mother, Cohen's first wife, Diana Mitzner, witnessed one of the alleged assaults, who confirmed in a separate interview with THR.

Cohen denied the claim, calling it "categorically untrue."

Meanwhile Argento was accused of sexual assault in 2018 by actor and musician Jimmy Bennett. Bennett claims that a then 37-year-old Argento assaulted him in a California hotel in 2013, only two months past his 17th birthday. The age of consent in California is 18. In a statement, she denied the assault allegation. According to a 2019 report by The New York Times, Argento reached a financial settlement with Bennett, paying him $380,000 with then late boyfriend Anthony Bourdain.