Rose McGowan Cancels Public Appearances, Wants Apology From Barnes & Noble

Maricela Magana/ Michael Priest Photography
Rose McGowan during a Thursday event at NYC's 92Y

"I have given enough," the actress tweeted, while calling out the book chain over an incident at their Union Square location on Wednesday night.

Rose McGowan has called off upcoming public appearances for her book tour, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed. She is also asking for an apology from the manager of a New York City Barnes & Noble over a situation that happened during her first book signing on Wednesday night.

"I am canceling upcoming public appearances because I have given enough," McGowan announced on Twitter. She claimed in a series of tweets that she was "verbally assaulted for two full minutes" by a woman who she says was an actor paid to engage with her.

During a signing and conversation about her memoir Brave at the Union Square Barnes & Noble, a transgender woman in the audience stood up and confronted McGowan about comments she had previously made about the trans community on a podcast with RuPaul. After a reportedly tense back and forth, the audience member was eventually escorted out of the store. Part of the exchange was captured on video.

"No one in that room did anything," McGowan tweeted on Friday. Tagging Barnes & Noble, she wrote, "I would like an apology from the manager and all security people, and the audience, who did nothing and let the paid verbal assault of an assaulted woman happen. Cool?"

One night after the book event, McGowan headed uptown to a very different setting, where she was interviewed by journalist and friend Ronan Farrow before a packed audience at Manhattan's 92Y. During the 90-minute sitdown, McGowan revealed a new statutory rape claim, and the pair discussed her difficult upbringing and the timeline of events from when she first decided to speak on the record about Harvey Weinstein, whom she alleges raped her in 1997. 

During the conversation, McGowan mentioned the Barnes & Noble incident, connecting it to Farrow's reporting in the The New Yorker that Weinstein had hired private investigators to discredit his accusers and journalists investigating claims against him.

She claimed that Weinstein is still "going after her," and, though a few audience members laughed at the thought, McGowan very seriously told Farrow she believes she could be assassinated. "I know my life and I know my reality and I know that people like me get killed," she said adamantly. (THR was in the audience.) "He's been after me for a lot longer."

McGowan also opened up more generally about her fears. Growing up in a cult and experiencing abuse starting at age 4, she said she looked for weapons in every room to protect herself, and admitted that it's an instinct she still has. She claimed someone had been offered money to reveal what hotel she was staying at while in New York City and that the woman who engaged with her at the book store was a "paid plant."

"There was a plant last night at my first book signing, something I had only seen in movies by the way," she said. "There was definitely a paid plant that got up and started screaming at me and yelling at me." When pressed by Farrow about her assertion, she said she knew it was a plant because, "I had people watching the exchange about how it handed off."

(A rep for Weinstein told THR on Friday: "That’s absolutely 100 percent false. No one is monitoring her whereabouts. It’s unfortunate that she is choosing to marginalize a community that is fighting to have their voice heard by claiming that the individual was a 'plant' of my client. It’s simply untrue and disrespectful to the transgender community.")

Farrow also asked her about her relationship with the LGBTQ community and past critical comments she has made. She explained her position, saying gay men and women alike can be part of the "machine" that perpetuates misogyny. She also spoke about connecting with people all over the world on Twitter who are seeking advice about coming out. "I get so many messages," she said. "I don't know what to do. I have to figure it out. I have to find more resources."

McGowan has been on a whirlwind New York City press tour for both Brave and her new E! docuseries, Citizen Rose, since Monday, appearing on ABC's news showsThe Dr. Oz Show and The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. She had been scheduled for an event at Washington, D.C.'s Politics and Prose bookstore on Friday night that has now been canceled; the website announced that ticketholders will receive a full refund. Toronto's Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema sent out a cancellation and full refund notice as well for Sunday's In Conversation: Rose McGowan event. McGowan was also been scheduled for a Barnes & Noble event at The Grove in Los Angeles on Feb. 7.

Barnes & Noble said in a statement on Friday, "Barnes & Noble strives to make every author appearance in our stores a positive experience both for the author and our customers. In this case, a heckler appeared in the crowd and tried to disrupt the event and they were escorted out of the store by security."

See McGowan's tweets explaining why she has decided to take a step back from the public eye below.

Feb. 2, 3:50 p.m. Updated with Barnes & Noble statement.

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