Rose McGowan

Rose McGowan

Rose McGowan in an American actress whose pin-up looks and bad-girl demeanor attracted a devoted following in the 1990s.


Actress Rose McGowan was born to American parents in Florence, Italy, on September 5, 1973. Her vampish, pin-up looks and bad-girl demeanor were showcased in films such as Scream and Jawbreaker in the 1990s. She has also worked with director Quentin Tarantino, dated rocker Marilyn Manson and starred in the television series Charmed from 2001-2006.


Rose Arianna McGowan was born on September 5, 1973, to American parents living in Florence, Italy. Her Irish father, Daniel (an artist), and French mother, Terry (a writer), were involved in a religious cult called Children of God, which gave McGowan and her five siblings an unusual upbringing.

When McGowan was 10 years old, her family moved to the United States and her parents divorced. She spent the rest of her childhood with her mother in Oregon and Washington, and attended high school in Seattle. She legally emancipated herself when she was 15 years old and supported herself by working odd jobs.

Start of an Acting Career

McGowan did some modeling as a child in Italy and had an early interest in acting. After drifting from place to place in her later teens, she settled in Los Angeles and made her film debut in the comedy Encino Man in 1992. A few years later, independent film director Gregg Araki met her by chance and cast her as amoral teen temptress Ivy Blue in his film The Doom Generation. When the film was screened at the Sundance Film Festival in 1995, McGowan's performance caught the attention of many industry professionals.

Fame in the 1990s

McGowan rose to fame in the mid- to late '90s with appearances in several popular movies. Her vampish good looks and bad-girl demeanor were showcased in Wes Craven's slasher hit Scream in 1996, the 1950s-era coming-of-age story Going All the Way in 1997 and the high-school comedy Jawbreaker in 1999. She gained further exposure when she dated the provocative rocker Marilyn Manson from 1997 to 2001. In one of the couple's most notorious public appearances, at the MTV Video Music Awards in 1998, McGowan wore a revealing dress made almost entirely from strings of black beads.

Television and B-Movies

McGowan landed a major television role in the new millennium, playing Paige Matthews in the series Charmed, a fantasy-comedy about a family of witches. She appeared on Charmed from 2001 to 2006, in the meantime also taking roles in motion pictures like Monkeybone and the neo-noir crime thriller The Black Dahlia, as well as the made-for-television film Elvis.

In early 2007 McGowan was injured in an automobile accident and underwent plastic surgery for damage to her face. She returned to work in the two-movie project Grindhouse, an homage to violent B-movies, as well as a small part in Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof and a starring role in Robert Rodriguez's zombie-themed Planet Terror, in which she played stripper Cherry Darling and sported a machine gun as a prosthetic leg. She and Rodriguez were also romantically involved after working together.

Recent Work

McGowan continues to act in film and television. Her recent movie projects have ranged from the crime thriller Fifty Dead Men Walking in 2008 to a remake of Conan the Barbarian in 2011, and she was seen in guest roles on the television series Nip/Tuck (in 2009) and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (in 2011). 

In 2014, McGowan joined the cast of dramatic series Chosen starring Chad Michael Murray. She made headlines the following year for sharing a casting note for an Adam Sandler film she received on Twitter. According to her post, the actress was encouraged to wear a top that "shows off cleavage" in the note. McGowan was soon dropped by her agency, a move she thought was in retaliation for speaking out about sexism in Hollywood. She will next appear in the upcoming independent thriller Lower Bay with Christopher Lloyd.

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