Alexander Payne Says Rose McGowan Allegations Are ‘Simply Untrue’

McGowan and Payne. Photo-Illustration: Vulture and Getty Images

In a guest column for Deadline, director Alexander Payne responded to actress Rose McGowan’s allegations that Payne engaged in sexual misconduct with her when she was 15 years old, “grooming” her and exposing her to soft-core pornography. In 2018, before McGowan named Payne, she told Ronan Farrow that the famous figure who did this to her also committed statutory rape. Payne calls these allegations “false statements” and “simply untrue,” writing, “Rose is mistaken in saying we met when she was fifteen, in the late 1980s. I was a full-time film student at UCLA from 1984 until 1990, and I know that our paths never crossed.” He also denies McGowan’s claim to Variety that he showed her a soft-core movie that he “had directed for Showtime ‘under a different name.’ This would have been impossible, since I had never directed anything professionally, lurid or otherwise. I have also never worked for Showtime or directed under any name other than my own.” Payne claims that he met McGowan in 1991, when she auditioned for a video he was directing for the Playboy Channel, adding that the two “later went out on a couple of dates and remained on friendly terms for years.” McGowan would have been 17 or 18 years old in 1991. Payne claims, “I had no reason to question how old she was, since the role she read for required an actor who was of age.” Payne told Deadline that he “will have no further comment on the matter.”

Alexander Payne Says Rose McGowan Claims Are ‘Simply Untrue’