Italian actress Asia Argento during the Italian La7 tv program "Non Ë l'Arena', conducted by Massimo Giletti, in Rome, Italy, 30 september 2018. ANSA/RICCARDO ANTIMIANI Image Credit: AP

Asia Argento, who was accused of sexual assault against musician Jimmy Bennett, says what hurt her most was being called a paedophile.

In an interview on Italian news show Non e l’Arena, the 43-year-old expressed her urge to join the show The X Factor from which she got fired after allegations that she had paid off Bennett over a sexual assault in California in 2013 when he was 17 and she was 37.

“I would like to go back to The X Factor, to do my job, because my children are proud of me, Italy wants me and I have not done anything that I’m accused of,” she said.

“The thing that hurt me most was being called ‘paedophile’. I have children and that is a stigma that I do not wish for anyone.”

The Land of the Dead star denied Bennett’s description of the alleged attack saying she saw him “like a lost son”.

She compared the assault to being raped by disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein and said her biggest regret was failing to defend herself.

“I had not even defended myself in the meeting with Weinstein. I think it’s because of some childhood trauma,” she said.

Argento spoke of her former friend Rose McGowan and McGowan’s partner Rain Dove, who released text messages from their private conversation following the allegations.

“Rain Dove makes me sick, makes me throw up, is an unscrupulous, really bad person. These two women have sold those messages in a selective manner, saying that I had received Bennett’s nude photos since he was 12, but it was not true. For that people started calling me ‘paedophile,’” she added.

McGowan later recanted her version of the events in a public apology to Argento on Twitter.