Marilyn Manson‘s representatives have issued a statement on the artist’s behalf in response to questions about his past relationship with the actress Evan Rachel Wood.
The response comes after Manson ended an interview with Metal Hammer in September after the publication asked about testimony Wood gave in front of the California Senate Public Safety Committee in April 2019. That testimony took place during a hearing for the creation of the Phoenix Act, which extends the statute of limitations on domestic violence felonies from three to five years.
Wood spoke in her testimony about an abusive relationship she had been in for several years with a man she met in her late teens. While she did not specify who the man was, Wood gave a similar testimony about an abusive relationship to a House Judiciary Subcommittee in February 2018.
Manson and Wood got engaged in January 2010 after beginning a relationship in 2007, but they called off their engagement in August 2010.
After Manson cut short his interview with Metal Hammer, the publication sent Manson’s UK publicist 10 “key questions” that they wanted him to answer about his past relationships with Wood and other women.
The questions included references to previous interviews (such as a 2009 interview Manson gave to Spin where he appeared to acknowledge his tumultuous relationship with Wood) and Manson’s lyrics, with Metal Hammer citing the song ‘Perfume’ for the lines: “So you wear your damage on your sleeve… Cause victim is chic / You’re as famous as your pain”.
“We encourage these ongoing efforts towards accountability within the music industry, and we’re aware that providing artists with unquestioning support – particularly when there’s a legitimate reason to ask questions – undermines that, no matter how much we love their music or like them as people,” Metal Hammer explained in a piece about their Manson interview.
“It’s important we clarify that we’re not accusing Marilyn Manson of anything,” the outlet added. “We just wanted to have a conversation about it. He refused.”
In response to Metal Hammer‘s questions, Manson’s PR team have issued a lengthy statement which you can read in full below.
“Personal testimony is just that, and we think it’s inappropriate to comment on that.
“You then go on to talk about Manson being accused of ‘terrible things’ by unnamed ‘critics’ but offer no guidance on who these critics are and what these things are, so it’s not possible to comment.
“You then mention Mickey Rourke. It is my understanding that Evan Rachel Wood dated multiple people around the time she was dating Manson. Basic internet research will give you a host of other names that have not come up in any of our discussions. [After testifying before the House Judiciary Committee in 2018, Wood confirmed on Twitter that Rourke did not abuse her, writing: “A lot of rumours have been circulating around about who I was talking about in my testimony. I would like to clear something up and say, it wasn’t Mickey Rourke. We were never ‘together’.”]
“Your next couple of points deal with comments Manson made in Spin magazine in 2009. Your confusion around the timeline of this is extremely worrying. The comments in Spin where Manson had a fantasy of using a sledgehammer on Evan and he cut himself 158 times was obviously a theatrical rock star interview promoting a new record, and not a factual account. The fact that Evan and Manson got engaged six months after this interview would indicate that no one took this story literally.
“You go on to talk about Manson commenting on sexual harassment, Me Too and specifically the experiences of his ex partner Rose McGowan. These are all issues that Manson has publicly addressed and are available online. Please see Channel 4 interview from 15th December 2017.
“Manson has never shied away from public comment – equally he does not have to make ‘the same comment twice’.
“There will be no further comment on specific songs. Your journalist had the opportunity to ask Manson about his music – one of only two interviews granted in the UK – and he chose not to. Trying to weave one section of one song from an artist with a 30 plus year career to fit a narrative is both disingenuous and troublesome.
“You mention Manson’s ex fiancée Rose McGowan in your questions. Rose is one of the bravest and most outspoken figureheads of the Me Too movement. Manson remains friends with McGowan and she talks very fondly of their three a half years together. There are multiple sources worldwide. I link to a Washington Post article on McGowan’s memoir Brave.
“You fail to mention Manson’s ex-wife Dita Von Teese, who remains good friends with Manson. Quoting from a Female First article published in 2018, ‘Dita admits she has been ‘lucky’ to avoid any abusive episodes in the entertainment industry in her career.’
“There are also numerous articles over multiple years where Evan Rachel Wood speaks very positively about her relationship with Manson. In NetAPorters.com’s The Edit: ‘I wouldn’t trade any of [our relationship],’ Wood told the mag. ‘I appreciate everything he taught me. I just don’t think we were right for each other.’
“Finally you talk about death threats. Manson knows all about those – he has had many. He has spent his career being blamed for everything from Columbine to teenage suicide. Unfortunately, we live in a time where people believe what they read on the Internet, and feel free to say what they want with no actual evidence. The effects can be catastrophic and promoting non fact based information is wholly irresponsible. All we can try and do, as the media and individuals, is to use facts and truth and not hide behind gossip and conjecture to further our own agendas.”