“DailyMail TV” has released the second part of Asia Argento’s on-camera interview, her first since news broke in August that she settled a sexual assault case. After discussing the loss of Anthony Bourdain in the first half of the interview, Argento turned her attention toward Rose McGowan, Jimmy Bennett, and the allegation of sexual assault made against her. Argento has been accused by former actor Bennett. The two appeared together in the 2004 film “The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things.”
The initial report from The New York Times said Bennett accused Argento of assaulting him in 2013 at a California hotel. Bennett was 17 years old at the time of the incident, while Argento was 37. The age of consent in California is 18 years old. Shortly after, Rose McGowan released a personal statement verifying the contents of leaked text messages between Argento and McGowan’s partner, Rain Dove, that many interpreted as further evidence against Argento. The texts mentioned Argento receiving nude photos from Bennett when he was a young teenager.
“They were saying that I was a pedophile, pretty much, and I was a monster. That I was like [Harvey] Weinstein, like a serial predator,” Argento told “DailyMail TV” of McGowan and Dove. “These lies have destroyed my life.”
Argento previously denied the sexual assault allegation and reiterated her stance to the DailyMail. “What gave me the strength to talk to today is the rage I felt when both Rose McGowan and Rain Dove kept on saying these lies about me, saying that I was receiving nude photographs from Bennett since he was 12 years old,” Argento said. She announced earlier this month plans to sue McGowan for her statement.
The actress and filmmaker then tried to clarify the contents of the text messages, saying it was Bennett who made sexual advances on her. “I said in these messages [that] I was frozen, he was on top of me,” she said. “After this act, he said, ‘I have had this fantasy for 12 years.’ Which, for me, was really shocking. I told him at the time, ‘I never thought of you in these terms.'”
When asked if she paid off Bennett in a $380,000 settlement, Argento said she did and mentioned that she was advised to do so by Bourdain, which is something she revealed in her original statement denying the sexual assault claim.
“It was Anthony’s decision,” Argento told “DailyMail TV.” “Anthony knew it had been a traumatic experience in my life. I was going out with somebody whose wealth and fame far exceeded my own, so it was clear that it was an attempt [by Bennett] to get money from him.”
You can watch the second half of Argento’s interview with “DailyMail TV” in the video embed below.