ASIA Argento is an Italian actress who has starred in hit hollywood films such as xXx.
She came into the spotlight as part of the #MeToo movement following sexual assault allegations made against Harvey Weinstein and Rob Cohen, and is now releasing a book with details of the alleged encounters.
Who is Asia Argento?
Asia Argento was born Aria Maria Vittoria Rossa Argento on September 20, 1975.
She is an Italian actress, singer, model, and director.
Asia is best known for the role of Yelena in the first instalment in the xXx action movie franchise.
She started acting when she was nine, when she was cast in a small role in a film by Sergio Citti.
Argento's first child with Italian rock and roll musician Marco Castoldi, Anna Lou, was born in 2001.
She later married film director Michele Civetta in 2008 in Arezzo and her second child, Nicola Giovanni, was born in 2008 in Rome. The couple divorced in 2013.
Has she been married?
After splitting from Italian rock and roll musician Marco Castoldi and giving birth to her first child, Anna Lou, in 2001, Asiya found herself back in love.
She married film director Michele Civetta in 2008 in Arezzo and had her second child, Nicola Giovanni, the same year in Rome. However, the couple divorced in 2013.
Did she date Anthony Bourdain?
A few years later, she began dating celebrity chef, Anthony Bourdain.
On June 8 2018, news broke Bourdain, had been tragically found dead in a French hotel.
The actress described her partner as a protector and said he was an inspiration.
She wrote on Twitter: "Anthony gave all of himself in everything that he did.
"His brilliant, fearless spirit touched and inspired so many, and his generosity knew no bounds. I am beyond devastated."
Bourdain married his high school sweetheart Nancy Putkoski in 1985 but the pair divorced in 2005.
Two years later, Bourdain married MMA fighter Ottavia Busia.
He said the restaurant business brought them together as she was working in a restaurant and he was travelling the world.
Describing their split, he told People magazine in 2016: "My wife and I live, have lived, very separate lives for years.
Bourdain began dating Ms Argento in 2016, after meeting on his show Parts Unknown.
What allegations has Asia Argento made against Rob Cohen?
Asiya has alleged that "The Fast and the Furious" director Cohen sexually abused and drugged her 18 years ago while filming the hit film.
She alleged Cohen gave her the date rape drug GHB and that "he had a bottle of it."
"It’s the first time I’m talking about Cohen," Argento told the Italian newspaper Il Corriere della Sera. "He abused me.
"At the time, I really didn’t know what it was. I woke up in the morning naked in his bed."
Her claims against Cohen will be laid out in her upcoming autobiography "Anatomy of a Wild Heart," set to be released in Italy on January 26.
A spokesperson for Cohen responded to Argento's claims, denying them entirely.
"Mr. Cohen categorically denies Asia Argento’s accusation of assault against him as absolutely false," the spokesperson said in a statement."
This comes after Cohen's daughter, Valkyrie Weather, accused him of molesting her when she was a child and taking her to visit sex workers while shooting overseas locations.
Cohen, again, denied the allegations.
What allegations has Asia Argento made against Harvey Weinstein?
Asia said Harvey Weinstein raped her after he invited her to a party — and she arrived to find him alone in a hotel room in just a bathrobe.
She said Weinstein made her give him a massage with lotion then forcibly performed oral sex on her.
The Italian actress, 21 at the time, told The New Yorker magazine she was terrified by the “horrible trauma”.
She added: “He was so big. It wouldn’t stop. It was a nightmare. I was not willing.
“I said, ‘No, no, no!’ It’s twisted. A scary fairytale.”
Asia used a speech at the finale of the Cannes Film Festival to hit out at Weinstein.
She described Cannes as Weinstein's "hunting ground".
Has Asia Argento faced sexual assault claims?
It emerged in August 2018 that Asia, a leading #MeToo voice, reportedly paid off a former child star who accused her of sexually assaulting him when he was 17.
The New York Times report claims she quietly paid now 22-year-old Jimmy Bennett £300,000 ($380,000) after he threatened her with legal action.
The young actor reportedly claimed that in 2013 he had sex with Argento in a hotel room in California — where the age of consent is 18.
The Times said their report was based on correspondences between lawyers for Argento and Bennett that was sent anonymously to them and verified by people familiar with the case.
Included with the documents was a selfie showing the partially-nude couple in bed dated May 2013, when Bennett was 17 and Argento was 37, the report said.
TMZ released what they claim to be the photo, and claim she texted a pal: "The public knows nothing, only what NYT wrote. Which is one-sided. The shakedown letter. The horny kid jumped me.
"I had sex with him and it felt weird. I didn’t know he was a minor until the shakedown letter."
She went on: "It (sic) wasn't raped but I was frozen. He was on top of me. After, he told me I had been his sexual fantasy since was 12.
Bennett, who had played Ms Argento's young son in a 2004 film, decided to come forward when he saw her coming forward with her own sexual assault allegations, his lawyer said.
Bennett’s lawyer filed a notice of intent demanding $3.5 million in damages in November — one month after Argento and 12 other women publicly accused Weinstein of rape.
Ms Argento has denied the allegations and said the £300,000 payout was made by her late partner Mr Bourdin to help with Mr Bennett's "severe economic problems".
A statement said: “I am deeply shocked and hurt by having read news that is absolutely false.
"I have never had any sexual relationship with Bennett".
It added: "Subsequent to my exposure in the Weinstein case, Bennett – who was then undergoing severe economic problems and who had previously undertaken legal actions against his own family requesting millions in damages – unexpectedly made an exorbitant request of money from me.
"Bennett knew my boyfriend, Anthony Bourdain, was a man of great perceived wealth, and had his own reputation as a beloved public figure to protect. Anthony insisted the matter be handled privately and this was also what Bennett wanted.
"Anthony was afraid of the possible negative publicity that such a person, whom he considered dangerous, could have brought upon us.
"We decided to deal compassionately with Bennett’s demand for help and give it to him.
"Anthony personally undertook to help Bennett economically, upon the condition that we would no longer suffer any further intrusions in our life".
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