FKA twigs sat down with CBS’ Gayle King this week to discuss last December’s lawsuit in which she accused Shia LaBeouf of sexual battery, assault, and inflicting emotional distress. As previously reported, twigs alleged “relentless abuse” during her relationship with LaBeouf, with whom she collaborated on the 2019 autobiographical drama Honey Boy.
“He often would just start having an argument with me in the middle of the night and start accusing me of doing all sorts of things [like] planning to leave him in my head,” twigs said in a clip from the interview released on Wednesday. “He’d wake me up to tell me I was disgusting, that I was vile.”
These alleged actions, she explained, resulted in her slowly doubting herself and are examples of some of the frequently used techniques of abusers.
“It’s a tactic that a lot of abusers use,” she said. “It’s this constant availability and everything centered around them. And I think, you know, that’s why I wanted to come out and talk about this. Because the signs really are there from the beginning.”
Asked to pinpoint an exact moment where she realized there were problems with the relationship and LaBeouf’s behavior, twigs said there wasn’t just one.
“There wasn’t one set moment,” she said. “It’s very subtle. That’s the thing about domestic abuse, domestic violence. It’s a really gradual step-by-step process to get somebody to a place where they lose themselves so much they accept or feel like they deserve to be treated in that way. It’s not one thing. It’s loads of tiny little things that get sewn together into a nightmare.”
The full CBS feature, which King noted was twigs’ first TV interview on the subject, was released on Thursday. In a statement to CBS mentioned in Wednesday’s excerpt, LaBeouf’s legal team—which was previously reported to have filed a response to twigs’ suit in which they denied “each and every” allegation—said the practice of “issuing general denials to all the allegations” is standard procedure for civil practice. Furthermore, the lawyer said, it “signals nothing about Shia’s past statements or his acceptance of responsibility for things that he has done wrong.”
Below, see the extended version of the twigs interview from CBS This Morning:
Also released on Wednesday was an Elle cover story with FKA twigs, featuring an interview conducted by Marjon Carlos. In it, twigs reiterated that being in an abusive situation “can happen to anyone” and also spoke on how fearful she was about getting out of the aforementioned relationship.
“It’s a miracle I came out alive,” she said, later adding she believes it was merely “luck” that she was able to do so.
“I honestly wish I could say that I found some strength and I saw this light,” she said. “I wish I could say, ‘[It is] a testament to my strong character,’ or ‘It’s the way my mother raised me.’ It’s none of that. It’s pure luck that I’m not in that situation anymore.”
Also in the interview, twigs reflected on going to Sundance as part of the Honey Boy rollout in January 2019. According to her, there were people “who were very close to [LaBeouf]” who knew of the alleged abuse.
“There [were] people who have worked with Shia that I openly spoke to about the abuse that I was going through,” she said. “The reaction that I got [from his team] was pretty much, ‘Okay. Well, it’s Sundance.’”
In late January, twigs released her new single “Don’t Judge Me,” featuring Headie One and Fred Again. As she’s detailed in interviews, she now feels like she has “her life back” and can dive into her work as much as she sees fit.
If you or someone you know is in an abusive situation, help is available.