Because of “compounding factors surrounding recent revelations in the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment case,” film star Rose McGowan has canceled all upcoming public appearances, including her scheduled panel on Thursday.
The announcement came late Wednesday evening, less than 24 hours before McGowan was scheduled to be in Wichita.
McGowan planned to attend a screening of her directorial debut, “Dawn,” as well as participate in a free-wheeling panel discussion afterward.
Tallgrass had planned to honor her with its Ad Astra Award in person, given to filmmakers who have achieved filmmaking milestones in spite of significant difficulties.
The timing of her appearance came as McGowan became a leading voice in the Weinstein sexual assault case earlier this month.
“While we’re disappointed that Rose cannot be with us here in person, we understand that her well-being is the priority,” said Tallgrass Creative Director Lela Meadow-Conner in a news release. “We support her and our thoughts are with her.”
To “amplify” McGowan’s message, Tallgrass has assembled a panel of women filmmakers called “#WokeWomen: A Candid Conversation with Tallgrass’ Female Filmmakers,” scheduled for Thursday night in place of the McGowan panel.
“The whole world is now aware, in large part due to Rose’s efforts, about the rampant sexual harassment within the entertainment industry, and so in her honor, we have pulled together a panel of women filmmakers who will be attending the festival with their films, for a frank conversation, because the message doesn’t stop here,” Meadow-Conner said in the release.
Filmmakers scheduled to attend include Dorie Barton, Skye Borgman, Maddy Cooke, Simone Nortmann, Devin Sanchez and Deborah Riley.
Tallgrass has tried to honor McGowan with the Ad Astra Award for three years now, according to the release.
In early October, McGowan became one of the most outspoken voices on social media accusing Weinstein of rape – and taking aim at studios who she says covered up the allegations.
McGowan was one of many high-profile Hollywood celebrities, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie, in accusing the high-powered studio executive Weinstein of various forms of sexual misconduct, ranging from harassment to rape.