Asia Argento is not backing down…
The 43-year-old also discussed her rift with Rose McGowan — who she once considered a “sister” — and her romantic partner Rain Dove, who allegedly made startling allegations about Argento’s late boyfriend Anthony Bourdain.
Last October, Argento was featured in a New Yorker piece where she spoke out against disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein. A month later, she allegedly received a letter from Bennett, who threatened to make their sexual encounter public.
On her “traumatic experience,” Argento recalls:
“I had to go to a therapist. When me and Anthony were together we told each other everything and I told him also about this experience that happened in 2013… I was the one who was assaulted [so getting the letter] was painful.”
Despite the drama, Argento has sympathy for Bennett. She says:
“I understood why [he made his approach] at the time when it did because it was right after the article had come out talking about Harvey Weinstein and the whole MeToo tsunami exploded… So it was calculated. Also I was going out with [Anthony Bourdain] whose wealth and fame far exceeded my own so it was clear that it was an attempt to get money from him.”
Asia’s initial strategy was to not deal with this “terrorism” but to simply let it out. Asia says Bourdain agreed with this… at first:
“But then he told me it was better for him [to pay Bennett]. We understood because there was some PI investigation that he had problems financially… His parents had taken $1.2 million from him. He wasn’t working, his life was a mess… He had been accused by an ex girlfriend of child pornography, child molestation… And in a way it saddened me even though he assaulted me. I felt sorry for the child I had met, that I cared so much about. I knew in my heart he was in pain and he needed money… So Tony said ok let’s give this guy money so that he will leave us alone in our relationship.”
Bennett’s ex-girlfriend sought a restraining order against him in spring 2014, and reportedly told a judge via written statement that she wanted to press charges of unlawful sex with a minor (she was 17) and child pornography (he allegedly persuaded her to send nudes when she was 17) against him. However, the Los Angeles Police Department has not confirmed it received a complaint.
In regards to Bennett and his parents, their court case — where he alleges they swindled him out of $1.5 million in earnings — has been settled.
In the interview, Argento also slams McGowan and Dove for their “lies.”
As we reported last month, McGowan released a second statement saying Dove received alleged texts from Argento, saying Asia had “been receiving unsolicited nudes of Jimmy since he had been 12.” According to an alleged screenshot posted by Argento earlier this month, Dove later clarified that the text said Bennett was 17.
In response, Argento says in the interview:
“I didn’t speak earlier because I was in unimaginable pain for the loss of my partner. I just thought I would never be able to get up again… What made me take the strength to talk to you today is the rage I felt when both Rose McGowan and Rain Dove started and kept on saying these lies about me, saying that I received nude photographs from Bennett since he was 12 years old… The fact that she has not retracted these lies and the fact that she didn’t say she was sorry made me decide to bring a lawsuit [which she has yet to file] against her because it’s unacceptable… This has destroyed my life. These lies have destroyed my life.”
After Bourdain died of suicide, Argento says she received a phone call from McGowan.
“Rose said she was in Europe that she would come and see me… What I didn’t know is that she… told, this notion that she was coming to ‘my rescue’ in an interview.”
Nowadays, Argento calls McGowan’s actions a “publicity stunt”:
“I was completely numb, paralyzed, obviously I wasn’t reading. I didn’t even want to read the details of Anthony’s death. I was frightened to know… I found out later that she had given this information to the news so already it was like a publicity stunt but I didn’t see it… I thought, ‘My sister is coming here, to see me, to lift me.’ I thought it was incredibly kind of her to come and help me.”
During this chaotic time, Argento traveled to Berlin to meet McGowan. On this trip, she also met Rose’s romantic partner, Dove, for the first time.
“Rose suggested we go to Berlin and in this moment mind you if somebody would tell me paint yourself orange and walk around the square naked I would have done it if it would have made me feel better… She said, ‘Let’s change the air. Let’s go to Berlin, nobody will bother you there.”‘
According to Argento, they drifted from apartment to apartment meeting up with people McGowan claimed were friends.
During the trip, Argento wanted to know why Bourdain killed himself. That’s when Dove allegedly made startling claims about Bourdain. (While Dove identifies as gender non-binary and uses the pronoun “they,” Argento calls Dove “she.”)
According to Argento, Dove claimed to be an operative for a secretive network of wealthy women. One of the women wanted to fund Dove on a mission “to bring Anthony home.”
“I thought she [Dove] was absolutely crazy.”
After allegedly planning to get Anthony’s ashes, Dove returned the next day saying they had taken two private jets and a helicopter to complete the “mission.” Allegedly, Dove placed a box in front of Argento and told her it contained ashes from Bourdain’s remains.
“She said, ‘I went to the morgue where a woman from the network works and she had… empathy for you and that’s why she decided to take a little bit of the ashes [for you]. It was very dangerous. I could have been arrested… So she puts this little box there [in front of me] and I don’t touch it.”‘
That’s when Dove allegedly told a crazy tale about Bourdain.
“She [Dove] said the truth about Anthony’s death had been hidden by CNN so as not to ruin his image which for them is very valuable… He had relapsed on heroin according to the toxicology that Rain Dove said she had seen. Two days before he had relapsed. My brain is thinking, two days before he sounded strange… So I believed her [Dove] in this second. Then she told me Anthony was with a prostitute… She gave me strange details, that she was Middle Eastern, that CCTV showed she was wearing a hijab. They were together and Anthony was very angry with CNN because he thought they were painting him as a reality TV star and he wanted to be recognized as a humanitarian… I had never witnessed this aspect of him. I’m trying to imagine this version of Anthony… She said he took a syringe, jabbed it into his neck and injected heroin. The woman said that she saw him fumbling with the bathrobe belt and she left… Then she said, ‘I think he killed himself because he was afraid he would die of an overdose and that would look terrible for him.’… She said, ‘He had a giant bruise on his neck and he didn’t break his neck he died of suffocation.”‘
While Argento now recognizes the absurdity of it all, she believed Dove because of her “fragile” state.
“I am believing her because I am so fragile and I am looking for answers and she is giving me them, something to hold on to, a reason that he did it.”
DailyMailTV spoke with another witness who backs Argento’s account of what Dove said and did.
“I am a woman completely destroyed at this point. I don’t know what day it is. I thought maybe this was Rose’s Army that she spoke about. I thought maybe it exists.”
After Bennett’s allegations surfaced, Argento turned to “Rose’s Army” for help.
“I asked Rain if the network could help me some way.”
According to Argento, in response, Dove started to tease out details of what had happened between her and Bennett, which is why Argento texted Dove details of her and Bourdain’s dealings with Bennett.
“I said in the messages I was frozen and he was on top of me and after the act it felt weird.”
McGowan, via her lawyers, denies to DailyMailTV that she was involved in obtaining or making money from the texts. Dove says they were not behind the leaked texts.
“I am a single mother, I don’t have work, I can’t support both my children financially.”
Despite the drama, she is optimistic about her future.
“I am wounded… But I will recover.”
[Image via KIKA/WENN.]