Marilyn Manson is suing Evan Rachel Wood for defamation over her accusations of sexual abuse against him, arguing that her “malicious falsehood” was part of an “organized attack” that has derailed his career.
In a lawsuit filed Wednesday (March 2) in Los Angeles court, Manson claimed that ex-fiancee Wood had conspired with a woman named Ashley Gore — who both appear in the upcoming documentary Phoenix Rising — to falsely cast the rocker as a “rapist and abuser.” Manson, whose real name is Brian Warner, said the alleged scheme explains why he has faced multiple accusations of sexual misconduct over the past year.
“Gore and Wood have secretly recruited, coordinated, and pressured prospective accusers to emerge simultaneously with allegations of rape and abuse against Warner, and brazenly claim that it took 10 or more years to ‘realize’ their consensual relationships with Warner were supposedly abusive,” Manson wrote.
Reps for Wood did not immediately return a request for comment.
Manson has faced multiple accusations of wrongdoing over the past year. Ashley Walters, a former assistant, sued him in May, and model Ashley Morgan Smithline filed her own case in June. Game of Thrones actress Esme Bianco and a Jane Doe accuser have also filed lawsuits. Manson has denied all allegations.
Wood, who began publicly dating Manson in 2007 when she was 19 and he was 39, was one of the first to make such accusations, beginning with a February 2021 Instagram post, claiming that the rocker had “started grooming me when I was a teenager and horrifically abused me for years.” She claimed she was “brainwashed and manipulated into submission” and had stayed silent because of fear of retaliation.
In his new lawsuit, Manson claimed that Wood had never accused him of wrongdoing until she met Gore (also known as Illma Gore), whom he called “a grifter” who helped Wood “rebrand” as “an outspoken standard bearer for victims of domestic violence or sexual assault.”
To further their conspiracy, Manson claimed in the filing, the pair impersonated an FBI agent, provided scripts to “prospective accusers,” solicited his private information from former employees, and created a fake email address to manufacture evidence that he had sent illicit pornography.
In a statement to Billboard, Manson’s attorney Howard King said the suit was necessary “to stop a campaign of malicious and unjustified attacks on Brian Warner.” The lawyer’s statement also alleged the Wood and Gore used the “fabricated FBI letter” to “dupe” HBO into distributing the “one-sided” Phoenix Rising.
Concluded King, “The evidence of wrongdoing by Wood and Gore is irrefutable – and this legal action will hold them to account.”