Since Evan Rachel Wood shared an Instagram post two weeks ago in which she claimed ex-fiancé Marilyn Manson “groomed” and “horrifically abused” her during their relationship, over a dozen other women have come forward with their own claims of abuse against the entertainer. The latest woman to share her story is Game of Thrones actress Esme Bianco, who dated Manson in 2011.
Speaking to The Cut, Esme Bianco — who played sassy brothel worker Ros in several seasons of Game of Thrones — recalls how she first met her “teen idol” Manson (real name Brian Warner) through his ex-wife Dita Von Teese, when Bianco was also a burlesque dancer. A mostly-platonic friendship was formed, and in 2009 Bianco says she went to film a music video at Manson’s house in which she was to play a kidnap victim.
During the shoot, Esme Bianco claims Marilyn Manson forced her to wear lingerie, starved her for three days, became violent and tied her up, whipped her and used a “Violet Wand sex toy on her wounds”. Despite Bianco claiming that she felt disturbed by the experience, she says she convinced herself it was in the name of art, and the pair soon started a long-distance relationship once her marriage ended.
In 2011, according to The Cut, Bianco says that she moved in with Manson after two years of long-distance dating and alleges he became controlling to the point where she felt like “a prisoner”. She claims he chose what she would wear, when she was able to leave and return home (as she didn’t even have her own keys), who she was able to talk to — she recalls calling her family and friends from a closet — and would control when she slept, shaking her awake if she slept without permission.
When Game of Thrones premiered, Manson would play the episode’s sex scenes on a projector for his friends, with an anonymous former member of Manson’s inner circle claiming in the interview with The Cut that he saw the singer play the footage four times and say “That’s my girlfriend, she’s a whore. Look, her tits are out.”
Esme Bianco says that she lived with Marilyn Manson for two months, after which she tells The Cut she went into a dissociative state, saying she felt she was “hovering above life like I was looking at it through a net curtain.” In the interview she alleges that at one point Manson cut her with a knife and “I just remember laying there, and I didn’t fight it… it was kind of this final-straw moment where I had lost all sense of hope and safety.”
Bianco tells The Cut that she decided to leave for good after she alleges he chased her around the house with an axe, a story Manson’s former assistant Ashley Walters (who has also come forward with allegations of abuse) correlates for the publication, saying Bianco appeared to have a panic attack afterwards and was “visibly shaken up”. Bianco says she broke up with Manson over email shortly after she moved out of his house, telling The Cut: “I think that something inside me was just like, ‘Have some sort of respect for yourself’.”
In 2019, she joined forces with Evan Rachel Wood to advocate for lengthening the statute of limitations for reporting domestic violence offences in California from three years to five years. It involved them speaking in front of the California senate about their alleged experiences, though at the time neither of them named Marilyn Manson as their alleged abuser. The law passed in 2020.
At the time, Esme Bianco says she was scared that Marilyn Manson would come after her or destroy her career, but she tells The Cut that she now feels “massive relief” in sharing her story, dubbing Manson a “serial predator” and adding “He’s not a misunderstood artist… he deserves to be behind bars for the rest of his life.” Having been a fan of Manson’s when she was younger, she tells The Cut that he went from being a “massive role model who really helped me through some incredibly dark and difficult times as a teenager [to a] monster who almost destroyed me and almost destroyed so many women.”
You can read The Cut’s excellent piece on Esme Bianco’s experience HERE. In the meantime, her attorney, Jay Ellwanger, says that Bianco has been interviewed by the FBI and given evidence that “could be related to human trafficking and sex crimes”. We’ll continue to update the story on Manson as it progresses.
Marilyn Manson has denied some of the claims against him in a lengthy statement (which you can read HERE), calling his relationships “consensual”. We reported previously that his record company has dropped Manson in light of the allegations against him.
Help is available. If you require immediate assistance, please call 000. If you’d like to speak to someone about domestic violence, please call the 1800 Respect hotline on 1800 737 732 or chat online. Under 25? You can reach Kids Helpline at 1800 55 1800 or chat online.