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Asia Argento, daughter of horror director Dario, was undressed and actor Sergio Rubini, Vincent Gallo, Michael Pitt, Jonathan Rhys-Meyers). Michael Pitt dated Asia Argento - - Michael Pitt dated actress Asia However, Argento reportedly ended the relationship in , leaving Pitt "upset.". Friends 'were worried about Anthony Bourdain's crazy love for Asia . Bourdain and Argento's relationship then became public after the two.
Share via Email 'I didn't realise how hard it would be' Asia Argento It's difficult to spend a long time with Asia Argento without getting onto the subject of families. First of all there's her surname, which her director father, Dario, has made synonymous with a certain brand of gruesome Italian horror movie through films such as Suspiria, Profondo Rosso and Tenebrae.
Asia's mother, Daria Nicolodi, was the star of many of Dario's films which were produced by his father and his brother and Asia starred in three of Dario's later ones. Replacing your mother as your father's leading lady cannot have been without its complications, but then neither can having a father who deals in horrific violence for a living.
The only stories Dario would read Asia as a child were scripts for his latest projects, apparently, and under his direction, Asia has been undressed, raped and generally psychologically traumatised on screen. She ran away from home at 14, and now has her own four-year-old daughter, Anna, named after her half-sister who died in a motorcycle accident a few years ago. Argento has spent the past three years directing her second movie, The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things, which also deals with family, but not her own.
It is adapted from a novel by cult writer JT Leroy that is a loose fictionalisation of Leroy's own traumatic childhood. In the course of the story, Leroy's alter ego Jeremiah played by twins Dylan and Cole Sprouse is dragged across the US by his junkie prostitute mother, regularly abandoned, sexually abused by his mother's boyfriends and submitted to an equally brutal spell of indoctrination by his Bible-bashing grandparents.
As well as directing, Asia plays Leroy's mother, Sarah, in the film, thus setting up another complex Argento-style family dynamic. Leroy collaborated with her on the film, and they became close friends in the process.
We had to get as much as we could right, and a lot of it was to do with the fact that I love JT truly as a friend. He's somebody who will be in my life for ever. It wouldn't have been the same film if we didn't trust each other. With their disparate, but similarly unorthodox upbringings, they're quite a team - and between them, they've managed to assemble quite a cast, including Winona Ryder an avid Leroy fanMarilyn Manson Asia starred in one of his videos and Peter Fonda who works for an association that helps abused children.
It may sound like a bit of a celebrity love-in - a sleazy trawl through the landscape of white-trash America in general, and Leroy's painful memories in particular - but Argento doesn't see it that way. And he's been in therapy for years. In a way, when you talk so much about something, it does not belong to you any more. It's happened to me and my bad memories.
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I've manipulated them and now they could be parts of Gone With the Wind. Before The Heart Is Deceitful, she was building a reputation as something of a gothic wild child. The "bad memories" she refers to point to a childhood she characterises as lonely, bookish and depressed. She has dabbled in photography, fiction, singing, painting, and glamour modelling, and her first movie, Scarlet Diva, was a semi-autobiographical portrait of a jaded young international starlet.
But The Heart Is Deceitful was evidently more than a vanity project. I don't think you need to do that. I just care that it's good. No doubt about it, Savannah Knoop is an excellent designer. But the other thing she is, is an excellent liar. Accomplished, adventurous, and daring. I know this because, for six years, Knoop lived a lie. For six years, Knoop perpetuated one of the biggest literary hoaxes of modern times.
The Noughties have been an outstanding time for literary hoaxes. InJames Frey was exposed as inventing parts of A Million Little Pieces, his memoir of a lifetime of drug addiction. This year, it transpired that Love and Consequences, Margaret B Jones's memoir of growing up as a mixed-race, drug-running foster child in South Central Los Angeles, was the fabricated work of private-school-educated, all-white Margaret Seltzer.
Stephen Glass turned his multiple journalistic hoaxes into a professional identity; his story became the subject of a film, his autobiographical account of the hoaxing having done very nicely indeed, thank you.
But the best -- the most extravagant, most starry, most decadent -- literary hoax de nos jours, was committed in the name of JT LeRoy.
Jeremiah 'Terminator' LeRoy was the Aids-afflicted, emotionally damaged son of a truck-stop prostitute, who'd spent his teenage years living rough on the streets of San Francisco and turning tricks, who'd had a male-to-female sex change; and who overcame all this, and more, to became a literary wunderkind.
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Inhis first novel -- Sarah, the story of a child prostitute, which was presumed to be semi-autobiographical -- was published, to critical acclaim; within a year, LeRoy was the darling of a hip, indie celeb crowd. He was friends with Winona Ryder -- who claimed she met him before he was published, while he was still living rough, hanging about outside the opera house, "a real ragamuffin" -- with photographer Juergen Teller, with Courtney Love. Madonna sent him Kabbalah readings; he was a confidant of Liv Tyler, "who told him everything".
He made the cover of Vanity Fair -- inthe magazine ran a gushing story on him, in which they praised his writing abilities extravagantly -- "To literary critics and his fellow writers, JT LeRoy has distinguished himself as a precocious talent able to mine golden prose from his white-trash childhood"; drew comparisons with immense cultural icons -- "In public, LeRoy maintains a Warhol-like mystique. He wears wigs, female apparel, and oversize sunglasses, and he seldom says a word.
And yet he can give better phone than Warren Beatty, drawing powerful women into his world with his raspy, girlish drawl"; and wondered whether or not his ever-expanding coteries of adoring female celebrity fans will "make his career, or break it? He was a house-guest of Carrie Fisher. Shirley Manson wrote a song about him. Designers clamoured to dress him, magazine editors clamoured to commission him. Asia Argento -- the Italian film actress and director -- had a relationship with him.
For six years, JT LeRoy was the hottest, hippest, brightest, most intriguing literary sensation in the world. Which was great, except -- he didn't exist. His books were written by Laura Albert, a fortysomething woman who had been a punk, a phone-sex worker, and a porn author, but had never lived on the streets of San Francisco, or worked as a teenage prostitute.
Savannah Knoop -- Albert's twentysomething sister-in-law -- had played JT publicly. Knoop bound her breasts, and wore a preposterous blonde wig and sunglasses, affected a West-Virginian accent; and appeared as JT whenever a physical boy was needed.
Knoop gave JT's press conferences, she partied on his behalf, she travelled the world as him, doing readings and signings. She posed as him on photoshoots.
She had dinners with the directors and actors who optioned LeRoy novels as films; she hung around on set and advised when these films were being made. She had friendships as JT. She had the love affair with Asia Argento. This allowed Albert to feed Knoop lines when necessary, and cover for any gaps in 'his' knowledge, any biographical discrepancies.
For six years, it worked. People bought into JT, to a greater or lesser degree. They didn't ask too many questions. And it was fun; they were fun.
The whole story emerged pretty quickly after that; Geoffrey Knoop, Knoop's half-brother; Albert's then husband, revealed everything he knew, in an article in the New York Times in February Two years of fallout ensued. Albert's was visible and intense -- she was successfully sued for fraud by the film company who optioned Sarah; she split from Geoffrey Knoop.
Savannah Knoop, meanwhile, slipped from public view -- effortlessly, because no one really knew what she looked like. She was not legally accountable for the hoax; consensus among those celebrities, and non-celebrities, who had been hoaxed was that they were less wronged by Knoop than by Albert, who, it was felt, had pulled the strings.
But now, Knoop is revisiting the affair. Laura Albert is extremely cross about the whole thing. When she heard that Knoop was planning a book, she said: Just because you play a writer doesn't mean that you are a writer.Asia Argento Victim Explains What Happened
I think Savannah is being motivated by money and attention. Now that she has had to go back to being a civilian, this is her way of getting back to it.
It's sad and it's sleazy. She's really stepping on my feelings. I'm not interested in making a career of JT, I'm an artist. So I meet Knoop at the Tinc trunk show. Knoop has always made clothes on the side -- she is that kind of a girl. Since the demise of JT LeRoy, she's developed this dabbling into a serious fashion concern. No one else at the trunk show has ever heard of JT LeRoy. The editors and stylists are completely clueless about Savannah Knoop's brilliant and preposterous story.
JT, you don't feel like a boy to me. She gestures up and down at Knoop, who is standing feet away from her. She looks like a girl!
- Fooled you all
Knoop and I meet again, the following morning over brunch. Because I know lots about you from reading the book, I say. Knoop tells me that she was born in -- "the same year as JT, I think" -- which makes her 27, although she seems older.
Her family is extravagantly extended. Her father, John Knoop, is a big deal on the San Francisco film-making scene; her mother, Sharon Hennessey, is an acupuncturist and teacher, writer and film producer.
John already had three children when he met Sharon; together, they had a daughter, Hennessey -- whose surname is Knoop, you'll be relieved to hear; 10 years later, they had Savannah. Knoop's parents split up when Knoop was five, John Knoop moved out, but maintained a decent relationship with his daughters.
Savannah and Hennessey grew up to have close relationships with their half-brothers and sisters. She was, she says, "a little weird, as a kid. I mean, I got on with other kids, but. She went to an all-girls boarding school, which she really loved.