Rose McGowan

From XFamily - Children of God
Rose McGowan, 2005
Rose McGowan with her parents in Italy in the Spring of 1974 (see full image)

Rose McGowan

Rose Arianna[1] McGowan (born September 5, 1973[2] in Florence, Italy) is an American actress. She was raised in Italian communes of the Children of God/The Family cult, of which her father Daniel McGowan (an Irish artist born in California) and mother Terri (an American writer) were members. Within the cult, her parents were known as Barkos and Saffron Doodler, and her father was a leader of their Italian chapter.

Like actors Joaquin and River Phoenix who were also raised in the cult, McGowan grew up, in her words, "singing for money on the streets". Her early education consisted of limited home schooling, primarily from her mother, though like many children in the group she received an emphasis on reading from a very young age. McGowan has claimed that even early on she was adamantly "un-hippy" and never bought into the cult's lifestyle.

At age 9 or 10 (interview accounts vary), her father left with another of the group's members, and her mother brought her and her five siblings (Rose being the second oldest) to the United States, settling in Eugene, Oregon, at which point Rose wasn't yet able to speak English. Her parents divorced and Rose went to live with her grandmother in Gig Harbor, Washington, bouncing between her mother and father.

At age 15, Rose left to live on her own, supporting herself with several odd jobs, often having to lie about her age. Living on her own meant being forced to live on the streets for a short time, but despite this she later attended art and beauty school before heading to Los Angeles where she had a chance encounter with independent film director Gregg Araki, who cast her as the female lead in his 1995 Sundance Film Festival entry The Doom Generation, though her only prior acting experience was a minor role in 1992's Encino Man. Her performance in Araki's dark road movie earned her a nomination for Best Newcomer at the 1996 Independent Spirit Awards. Also in 1996, she appeared in Wes Craven's hit thriller, Scream, a role that brought her into significant public attention.

Adding to her reputation for often playing brassy or violent characters, McGowan later began a very public romance with shock-rocker Brian Warner (Marilyn Manson). However, two years after their engagement in February 1999, McGowan ended their relationship over "lifestyle differences".

In 2001, she was cast as Paige Matthews in the television series Charmed. Most recently, she starred in the Quentin Tarantino / Robert Rodriguez double-feature Grindhouse.

Rose McGowan on the Children of God

  • "My father ran the Italian chapter, and from the outside it would be considered strange, but if you grow up in it, it's normal. I suppose all children are at the mercy of their parents, and whatever trip they happen to be on, and my parents were tripping pretty hard." — Interview magazine: A Rose is a Rose is a Rose McGowan, 1997-03-01
  • "There was a lot of things that didn't make a whole lot of sense to me even at a very young age. I just had a really skeptical eye because I didn't buy it and because obviously a lot of stuff that I saw going on was very different from what was being preached. I don't really buy into forced belief systems." — Daily Bruin: Rose McGowan screams for more horror in 'Phantoms', 1998-01
  • "Like many things, I'm sure they started out with good intentions. Meanwhile they're all having sex with each other and going out and getting men drunk and luring them into the cult. They call it Flirty Fishing. Gross. A lot of kids disappeared. I could be sweeping Ghadaffi's doorstep right now." — The Face: Rising Vamp, 1998-09-01
  • "All these weirdo people were always running around naked. I remember seeing a lot of legs, but not a lot of faces." — Maxim: Wild Rose!, 1999-03-01
  • "I don't remember so much their ideology, but I don't think they were even very clear on that. Mostly, I think it's funny, but I have a perverse sense of humor. Anyway, you don't know it's not the white picket fence until someone points it out. … Actually, for me it was kind of idyllic." — E! Online: Q&A with Rose McGowan, 1999-03


The Doom Generation (1995)
Jawbreaker (1999)
  • Grindhouse (2007) – Cherry (Planet Terror) / Pam (Death Proof)
  • The Black Dahlia (2006) – Sheryl Saddon
  • "Elvis" (2005) (mini) TV Series – Ann-Margret
  • Vacuums (2002) – Leha
  • "Charmed" (2001–2006) TV Series – Paige Matthews
  • The Killing Yard (2001) (TV) – Linda Borus
  • Monkeybone (2001) – Miss Kitty
  • Strange Hearts (2001) – Moira Kennedy
  • The Last Stop (2000) – Nancy
  • Ready to Rumble (2000/I) – Sasha
  • Sleeping Beauties (1999) – Sno Blo
  • Jawbreaker (1999) – Courtney Alice Shayne
  • Devil in the Flesh (1998) – Debbie Strand
  • Southie (1998) – Kathy Quinn
  • Phantoms (1998) – Lisa Pailey
  • Lewis & Clark & George (1997) – George
  • Nowhere (1997) – Valley Chick #3
  • Going All the Way (1997) – Gail Ann Thayer
  • Seed (1997) – Miriam
  • Scream (1996) – Tatum Riley
  • Kiss & Tell (1996) – Jasmine
  • Bio-Dome (1996) – Denise
  • The Doom Generation (1995) – Amy Blue
  • Encino Man (1992) – Nora

External links

Notes and references

  1. While a number of sources list Rose McGowan's middle name as Jane, according to her mother, Terri, her middle name is Arianna and she is somewhat puzzled as to how people came to believe that her middle name is Jane: "It's possible that Rose gave someone that middle name at some point... But if she did so, she doesn't remember it now. She wondered the same thing the other day -- where did they get Jane from."
    Source: Correspondence to editors, 2007-03-12.
  2. While some other sources list her birth date as being in 1974 or 1975, her mother has confirmed that it was in 1973.
    Source: Correspondence to editors, 2007-03-12.