Actress and director Rose McGowan is adding musician to her hyphenate career, with the release of her first music video for “RM486.” McGowan, as styled by B Akerland (founder of the fashion app WHOYOUARE), takes the guise of an alien, a goth, and then some, in the video directed by Jonas Akerlund. Here, McGowan sheds some light on the concept for the video and what she hopes viewers will take away from it.
What does “RM486” stand for? There’s a controversial abortion drug called RU486. It’s an entrée into what’s being done to women in the world right now and the attack on our rights.
What does each persona in the video represent? The alien is where I’m from. I grew up in Italy, not America and it’s about how I’ve always felt internally and how I felt about coming here. The Goth is a funny misconception of me, but I think she’s actually the most beautiful character in it and the most challenging to look at. The green hair is the Hollywood portion of my life. It felt like I was mute for fifteen years. Everything that came out of my mouth was something that someone wrote for me to say. The red is just like, bring it, and let’s go. At the end it’s just me, the artist.
What do you mean by your Goth phase being a “misconception?” Well, I never had a Goth phase. I have dark hair and white skin, and you kind of get labeled. There was a producer in Hollywood who was like, “You’ll always have to play the bad girl because you have dark hair.”
How long did it take you to write this song? I did it after the Gaultier couture show in Paris, because that’s where the band I work with, Punishment, is based. I had one hour between shows to go record the song.
Did the Gaultier show inspire your work? It was pretty otherworldly at Gaultier, so yeah, I was inspired by it a little bit, for sure.
What do you want viewers/listeners to take away from this project? I really just want to push back on the cultural norms of what’s beautiful and acceptable. I want people to know that it’s okay to be different and awesome and just go for it.
Watch the full video for “RM486” here.