Rose McGowan on new album and breaking up with Hollywood

Rose McGowan talks to Yahoo Entertainment about her new album, Planet 9.

Video Transcript

LYNDSEY PARKER: What a appropriate time to re-releasing the "Planet Nine" album, which is all about this envision utopia and getting off this damn planet and going somewhere more peaceful and more utopian. How did making this music in the past very tumultuous five years help heal your personal trauma, which you are referring to with Weinstein and other things?

ROSE MCGOWAN: Well, it helped me here, like "Lonely House," you know, I start it. There's only a couple. I would say. There's like, yeah, a "Lonely House" I started with, are you lonely on your planet? Are you lonely on the fringe, because I was? And I was a fringe person and lonely as hell.

I was at a 7-Eleven one night, I remember, at the height of TV fame. And I had this thought. I had my head down. And I was like, paying. And I was like, I'm the loneliest person on the planet. And the guy behind the counter just goes, you must have the happiest life. And I was dumb. And I was like, yeah. And it's just like that. And oh, poor me. But it is like the golden handcuffs in a way. Like, it's a very strange life.

LYNDSEY PARKER: So is acting completely never again?

ROSE MCGOWAN: It was my day job. I acquitted myself very well. But it wasn't like the love of my life. That work, I refused to give up who I was forever just to stay in a system that I fundamentally disagree with that I think is a cult. And then I get blacklisted after being sexually assaulted. And then what job are you going to do?

So then it was like, taking the dregs and scraping the bottom of the barrel trying to get what you could. And that's just a crappy way to live. And it's not, you know, artistically where I live.

LYNDSEY PARKER: Is "Lonely House" specifically about Weinstein?

ROSE MCGOWAN: That's him, yeah. Hurt by beast of no nation. Hurt by beast, no provocation.

LYNDSEY PARKER: I think that might--

ROSE MCGOWAN: But that's what the whole song is not about him at all. It's bigger than that. I would never make it a song about him. He's not worth it.

LYNDSEY PARKER: Do you ever regret going into acting since it wasn't your like, passion, and it did lead to some very bad things happening for you to?

ROSE MCGOWAN: I do. But at the same time, I think it was always going to be that way. I think it was always, weirdly enough, my whole life, I was-- I was deathly afraid of being sexually assaulted, as I think most women are, right? It's just a common constant.

The guy coming in at night with a mask on his face. And like, oh, that's terrifying. It's the boogie man. But our boogie man is usually someone we know, even if it's just at a breakfast meeting in my case at 10:00 in the morning or someone you went out on a date with, you know. They come in all forms. And I wish I'd gotten out of Hollywood sooner.

It was kind of like doing undercover work for so long that you just lose your brain. But then I found it again. And I kind of wrote my way out of Hollywood. I shaved my head. And the side effect immediately-- it was weird-- was that men and women could hear the words coming out of my mouth for the first time.

And I wasn't saying anything differently. But just by breaking the stereotype of what a traditional woman looks like, my voice was heard. And I thought, I wonder if I can do this for other women in other humans without them having to shave their head.

LYNDSEY PARKER: I was going to ask you why you shaved your head. Obviously it's not completely shaved right now like the way it is on the beautiful album art. But yeah, was it a whim? Or what-- was it a calculated thing?

ROSE MCGOWAN: It was a way of like, making it so I could not go back to Hollywood. I used to get asked all the time when I shaved my head, oh, did you break up with someone? And from women, of course, saying that all the time. I was like, what a stupid internalized misogynistic question. No, of course, when you break up with someone. But then I realized they were actually right in a weird way.

I broke up with the world. I broke up with a societal ideal of what I was supposed to look like as a performer as an actress as a Hollywood person as a woman. I was like, and F off. You know I mean? It's like, no, I will not-- why do I have to look like what makes you feel better?

LYNDSEY PARKER: Was part of your reasoning or part of your desire to break up with the world or with Hollywood, was it because of the fact that for so long, the tides thankfully have turned, that people didn't believe you?

ROSE MCGOWAN: Harvey Weinstein and his machine, as they do, they paint you as crazy drug addict whore. That's their whole saying that they have done to women for centuries. She's crazy. Don't listen. Or Mrs. Rochester in Jane Eyre. How do you really know she's crazy? You just have a man's word for it, right? Stuff like that. It's a very classical way of just silencing humans. And I think it's-- I think it's a terrible thing that they do to humans.

I had to live with going to a dinner party in Hollywood with somebody-- a leering agent next me going, hey, get any good Weinstein scripts lately? Stuff like that-- relentless to get a reaction out of me-- brutal stuff, like constantly. I would go to, say-- I remember going to some stupid "Vogue" luncheon-- barf. And the actress is scooting away from me. Like, I had a black listing. It was like something they could catch.

They would just like, literally turn their backs on me and not talk. I went to a gala dinner in Cannes. They didn't really think about it. And they sat me between him and his ex-wife. And she'd turned away from me and wouldn't even look at me. And he's like, leering at me. And I'm like-- and I had-- and this is about 10 years after being raped.

I was in Cannes to support a movie of mine. And he sent me Marchesa dresses to wear-- these hideous dresses. And I was like, what the [BLEEP] I'll take your pink vomit and burn it. Get out of here. I was like, what did I do to these people? I could never figure it out. Now, with Ronan Farrow's reporting I know why. I was like, ah, OK, that makes sense.

LYNDSEY PARKER: Have any actresses behind the scenes, I guess, or publicly apologize-- either apologize for how they treated you for not believing you or anything like that? Or have other people in Hollywood done that?


LYNDSEY PARKER: No-- not a one?


LYNDSEY PARKER: That kind of sucks.

ROSE MCGOWAN: You know, I get asked a lot, do you feel vindicated? Are you happy that people believe you now? Honestly, I haven't give a [BLEEP].

LYNDSEY PARKER: Do think things are better now in the post Me Too movement age?

ROSE MCGOWAN: I think so, absolutely. I had two young women come up to me on the street the last time I was there. And they're like, we feel safer on set now. Thank you so much.

LYNDSEY PARKER: Do you feel safer now, because of everything that's happened in the last coming to light in the last couple years? Do you feel more healed?

ROSE MCGOWAN: I do now. I feel honestly, like, him going to jail and being in prison-- and I know it's a lot of other women that feel this way too. But I'm talking about me right now. So I feel like I have a 350-pound foot off my back that's just been like, pinning me down for so many years.