The activist, filmmaker and former actor said last week (10 February) that she was “disgusted” by the gown, which had the surnames of a number of high-profile female directors embroidered into it.
On her official Facebook page, McGowan accused Portman of performative activism, and suggested that she was merely “acting the part of someone who cares”.
McGowan has now said that she regretted the tone of her original message, albeit while not referencing Portman by name.
“My critique should’ve been about Hollywood’s ongoing culture of silence,” McGowan wrote on Twitter. “I realise that by critiquing someone personally, I lost sight of the bigger picture.”
She continued, “All voices, however spoken, are valid. Let’s all keep pushing boundaries in whatever way we can, it’s time to get loud.”
My critique should’ve been about Hollywood’s ongoing culture of silence. I realize that by critiquing someone personally, I lost sight of the bigger picture. All voices, however spoken, are valid. Let’s all keep pushing boundaries in whatever way we can, it’s time to get loud.— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan)February 17, 2020
McGowan had originally criticised Portman for not working with female filmmakers herself, a claim that Portman rebuked in her own statement.
“It is true I’ve only made a few films with women,” Portman wrote. “In my long career, I’ve only gotten the chance to work with female directors a few times … Unfortunately, the unmade films I have tried to make are a ghost history.”
Portman previously attempted to set up projects with filmmakers including Lynne Ramsay, Marielle Heller and Patty Jenkins – all of which failed to get off the ground with those specific directors attached.
“I have had the experience a few times of helping get female directors hired on projects which they were then forced out of because of the conditions they faced at work,” Portman wrote. “I want to say, I have tried, and I will keep trying. While I have not yet been successful, I am hopeful that we are stepping into a new day.”
Portman has yet to respond to McGowan’s latest statement.