Game of Thrones actress Esme Bianco has filed a lawsuit against Marilyn Manson, accusing the disgraced rocker of sexual assault, physical abuse, and human trafficking.
The British actress first went public with her claims against Manson in February 2021, shortly after Manson’s former fiancée Evan Rachel Wood and four other women alleged that they were abused by the rocker. In a tell-all interview with New York magazine’s The Cut, Bianco detailed a similarly tumultuous relationship with Manson, who she became romantically involved with in 2009 during the filming of his video “I Want to Kill You Like They Do in the Movies”.
Bianco claims Manson’s violence against her began during the video, when he allegedly told her, “You are gonna have to pretend to like being manhandled by me.” As Bianco recalls, the lines between acting and reality became blurred, as Manson supplied her with cocaine, tied her with cables, lashed her with a whip, and used a painful electric sex toy on the wounds she sustained from the lashings. At the time, she was 26 years old and convinced herself that she formed a bond with Manson amid the violence. The video was ultimately shelved.
The two then started an affair and eventually moved in together in 2011. The abuse allegedly continued at his West Hollywood home, as Bianco recalled Manson biting and whipping her without consent during sex and even cutting her with a “Nazi knife.” She accused Manson of using “drugs, force, and threats of force to coerce sexual acts” from her on multiple occasions, and claims he raped her in May 2011.
In the lawsuit, filed Friday in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, Bianco claims Manson violated California laws for sexual assault and battery, as well as human trafficking. In regards to the latter charge, Bianco says that because her visa was obtained on the premise she would be appearing in Manson’s film projects, he “was able to control Ms. Bianco by threatening to withdraw support if she displeased him.”
The lawsuit reads, in part, “Mr. Warner used drugs, force, and threats of force to coerce sexual acts from Ms. Bianco on multiple occasions. Mr. Warner raped Ms. Bianco in or around May 2011.” It goes on to claim that Manson’s acts included “spanking, biting, cutting, and whipping Ms. Bianco’s buttocks, breasts, and genitals for Mr. Warner’s sexual gratification — all without the consent of Plaintiff.”
Bianco also names Manson’s longtime manager, Tony Ciulla, as a co-defendant, contending he aided Manson in violating human trafficking laws. Bianco says Ciulla was aware of Manson’s abusive behavior, but looked the other way because he “benefited financially.” “Mr. Warner’s management had a vested interest in supporting his violent tendencies to encourage the creation of his ‘art’ and the promotion of the brand of Marilyn Manson, and were complicit in Mr. Warner’s abuse of Ms. Bianco,” the suit states. Ciulla parted ways with Manson in February.
“For far too long, my abuser has been left unchecked, enabled by money, fame and an industry that turned a blind eye,” Bianco said in a statement to Rolling Stone. “Despite the numerous brave women who have spoken out against Marilyn Manson, countless survivors remain silenced, and some of their voices will never be heard. My hope is that by raising mine, I will help to stop Brian Warner from shattering any more lives and empower other victims to seek their own small measure of justice.”
In February, Warner responded to the numerous claims against him by calling them “horrible distortions of reality.” “My intimate relationships have always been entirely consensual with like-minded partners,” he wrote in a statement. “Regardless of how – and why – others are now choosing to misrepresent the past, that is the truth.”