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Rose McGowan on LGBT Activism, Her Lesbian Posse and Her Girl Crush

Rose McGowan on LGBT Activism, Her Lesbian Posse and Her Girl Crush

Now playing a hauntingly alluring witch in Conan the Barbarian, in theaters August 19, McGowan talks to The Advocate’s Brandon Voss about her equality activism, LGBT family, dream lesbian crush, and her desire to do a guest spot on Glee.

Fans of film and TV are no doubt familiar with Rose McGowan by now. Either from her long running TV show, Charmed, or one of her many memorable roles in films like The Doom Generation, Scream, Jawbreaker, and Grindhouse.

Now playing a hauntingly alluring witch in Conan the Barbarian, in theaters August 19, McGowan talks to The Advocate about her activism for LGBT equality, her LGBT family, her dream lesbian crush and her desire to do a guest spot on Glee.

For the foodie

Here are some highlights of McGowan’s delightful interview:

Are you bisexual?
No. I disappoint myself. I’ve never even kissed a girl. Isn’t that funny? The girls I think are cute look like guys, but then I think, But if they open their shirt, they’ll have breasts. You know that guy Brad [Goreski], who was Rachel Zoe’s assistant? I’d be attracted to a girl version of him.

That admission alone may make you an honorary member of the LGBT community.
I was actually gay-bashed once. When I was with the drag queens, I had really short hair — sometimes they’d dress me up as Charlie Chaplin, just for fun — and I got clocked coming out of a gay club. But it was awesome, because my boys beat the hell out of those people, and it’s that kind of shit that’s made me a fighter for equal rights and for anybody’s humanity.

As a vocal supporter of marriage equality, you participated in the NOH8 Campaign.
My sister is gay. Before I broke up with my fiancé, it seemed absurd to have my sister at a wedding that she couldn’t have if she wanted to. I would still have great hesitation about getting married. I’d feel like such a hypocrite, walking down the aisle past all of my best friends who can’t. I was furious with how horribly the whole Prop. 8 campaign was run in California. It broke my heart the night Prop. 8 passed. I’m out there on Santa Monica Blvd. with crowds of people, and the world is watching, but all the anti-Prop. 8 protestors did was put up the same non-telegenic people with the same speeches, not understanding how it works. Their money was totally mismanaged. I really want California to get it together like New York has.

How did your sister come out to you?
It was just a natural thing. It never occurred to me that she was gay or that she wasn’t. Although at one point, after dating women, she was scared to tell me that she was going out with a guy. It actually freaked me out, and I stopped speaking to her for three months. Now, thank God, she’s back to women, and life is good again.

That almost sounds heterophobic.
It’s not that I don’t have straight friends, but en masse they make me uncomfortable — especially a bunch of straight men. I was at a party recently, and I started getting really twitchy and weird. My friend was like, “What is wrong with you?” I realized that it was all the straight people. I was like, “These are not my people. I have to leave.”

You also mentioned your lesbian assistant in the article.
I have a different one now. [Laughs] I had one for four years, and now I have a new one. She and her friends — they’re all exes of each other — are an unbelievable family. It’s a group effort: If my fridge breaks down, one of them is here with an ice chest in 15 minutes. It’s a great club I’ve been invited into without having to be a lesbian. I totally have my own little L Word. We go to lesbian nightclubs a lot.

Yet you’ve never played a gay role.
I’ve never been offered one. I’d be stoked to do a lesbian love scene. When asked if I’ve kissed a girl, I could finally say, “Why, yes, I have. And I got paid.”

If you were to play a lesbian, whom would you want to play your love interest?
Whenever someone asks if I have a crush on any male actors, the problem is that I only like people who are dead, like Robert Mitcham or Cary Grant. So my answer to you would have to be someone like Ava Gardner. I will not be a cliché and say Angelina Jolie.

Have you kept in touch with Ryan Murphy after Nip/Tuck? Your singing skills would be put to good use as a guest star on Glee.
Right? I’d be great on Glee. I’m not sure if Ryan knows I sing. Hello, Ryan. Let’s start a grassroots effort.

Read more about Rose McGowan’s favorite roles and her strong ties to the LGBT community on Advocate.com now.

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