Evan Rachel Wood Claims Marilyn Manson ‘Essentially Raped’ Her on Music Video Set
Actress Evan Rachel Wood, a former fiancée of the rock singer Marilyn Manson, alleges she was "essentially raped on camera" by the musician during the filming of his 2007 music video for "Heart-Shaped Glasses."
Wood makes the claim in a new documentary based on her activism, Phoenix Rising, according to NME. It premiered at the Sundance festival on Sunday (Jan. 23).
Last year, several women accused Manson of sexual and other types of abuse, sparked by an initial allegation from Wood. The musician is now facing lawsuits related to the horrific accusations and is currently being investigated by the LA County Sheriff.
Content warning: The following contains descriptions of alleged sexual assault.
In 2007, Wood and Manson were dating, and she agreed to appear in his video for "Heart-Shaped Glasses (When the Heart Guides the Hand)" from the singer's Eat Me, Drink Me album. However, in Phoenix Rising, she says she was sexually assaulted on set.
The music video opens with a scene showing Wood and Manson kissing and engaging in theatrical sex. The song itself was inspired by Wood. (Wood and Manson went public with their relationship in January 2007, the year Wood turned 20 and Manson turned 38.)
"We had discussed a simulated sex scene," Wood now explains of the shoot, "but once the cameras were rolling, he started penetrating me for real. I had never agreed to that. I’m a professional actress, I have been doing this my whole life. I’d never been on a set that unprofessional in my life up until this day. It was complete chaos, and I did not feel safe."
She continues, "It was a really traumatizing experience filming the video. I didn't know how to advocate for myself or know how to say no because I had been conditioned and trained to never talk back."
Wood adds, "I felt disgusting and like I had done something shameful, and I could tell that the crew was very uncomfortable and nobody knew what to do. I was coerced into a commercial sex act under false pretenses. That's when the first crime was committed against me and I was essentially raped on camera."
In February 2021, Wood claimed Manson "started grooming me when I was a teenager and horrifically abused me for years." At least four others revealed their accusations against him simultaneously. Actress Esmé Bianco eventually joined them.
Manson replied that the allegations were "horrible distortions of reality. My intimate relationships have always been entirely consensual with like-minded partners. Regardless of how … others are now choosing to misrepresent the past, that is the truth."
In July, a lawyer for Manson claimed Bianco and others were co-conspirators "trying to conflate the imagery and artistry of Warner's 'shock rock' stage persona … with fabricated accounts of abuse." The musician's legal team has continued to deny the allegations.
Manson has mostly laid low since the accusations surfaced, apart from a handful of appearances with Kanye West, some leading to speculation that Manson might have turned to Christianity.
See a timeline of the Marilyn Manson abuse allegations below.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, resources are available to help. Please visit RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network) online or dial 800-656-HOPE (800-656-4673).