Marilyn Manson Faces Major Setback in Evan Rachel Wood Defamation Case: Significant Legal Loss.

Marilyn Manson

Marilyn Manson’s defamation lawsuit against Evan Rachel Wood faced a setback as a judge struck down several of Manson’s claims on Tuesday. The ruling marked a significant victory for Wood in the ongoing legal battle between the musician and the Westworld actress.

In the lawsuit, a Los Angeles judge sided with Wood and dismissed multiple claims made by Manson. These included allegations that Wood had orchestrated a conspiracy by recruiting and pressuring women to make false accusations against him, as well as claims that she had forged an FBI letter.

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Judge Teresa Beaudet stated that there was insufficient evidence to support Manson’s claims of infliction of emotional distress based on Wood’s alleged involvement in recruiting and coordinating women to make false accusations against him. Additionally, the judge deemed Wood and Ilma Gore’s comments about Manson’s 1996 short film, Groupie, which they claimed featured an underage individual, to be a “protected activity.” This refers to their right to express their opinions and critique the film. Actress Pola Weiss, who starred in the film, had previously confirmed that she was over 18 at the time of shooting.

Wood’s attorney, Michael Kump, expressed satisfaction with the judge’s ruling, stating that it demonstrated the lack of merit in Manson’s claims. However, Manson’s attorney, Howard King, called the ruling disappointing but not unexpected. King indicated their intention to appeal the decision to the California Court of Appeal, highlighting the court’s refusal to consider certain evidence, such as a sworn declaration by Ashley Smithline, who recanted her allegations against Manson and accused Wood of pressuring her to make false statements.

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Manson’s original lawsuit had alleged that Wood and Gore impersonated an FBI agent to create the illusion of an ongoing federal investigation into Manson’s alleged crimes. He claimed that they sent letters from this fictitious agent to women who later made public allegations against him, implying that they were in danger. Manson also accused Wood and Gore of providing checklists and scripts to prospective accusers. These specific claims were dismissed from the lawsuit due to the judge’s ruling.

During the hearing, Manson’s legal team argued for the FBI letter to be considered as context against Gore, but the judge rejected this request. The judge expressed frustration with the attorneys and reiterated her decision, stating that she would not make any further clarifications.

Although a tentative trial date of May 1, 2024, was set by the judge, Manson’s planned appeal is likely to delay the proceedings by over a year.

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This court update comes nearly a year after Manson filed the lawsuit against Wood and Gore, accusing them of damaging his career with false allegations of rape and abuse. The lawsuit described a conspiracy allegedly orchestrated by the two women to tarnish Manson’s reputation.

Wood and Gore are prominently featured in the documentary Phoenix Rising, directed by Amy Berg, which chronicles Wood’s accusations against Manson. The documentary is set to premiere on HBO on March 15 and delves into their initial encounter when Wood was a teenager, leading up to her decision to publicly name Manson as her alleged abuser.