September 18, 2014 2:13 pm
Updated: September 18, 2014 2:18 pm

WATCH: Rose McGowan shines light on IPF, takes time to breathe

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ABOVE: Watch Rose McGowan on Global’s The Morning Show.

TORONTO — Rose McGowan lived the Charmed life for five seasons and then stepped away from the spotlight to care for her father, who suffered with — and eventually died from — a lung disease that is largely untreatable.

The 41-year-old actress is now dedicated to spreading the word about idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

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“It’s rare in the sense that nobody knows about it. It’s not rare in the sense that it does happen to quite a few people. It kills more people each year than breast cancer,” McGowan said Thursday during an appearance on Global’s The Morning Show.

“People have to get out there and bang the drum.”

McGowan is doing her part by spreading the word about a social media campaign that is raising funds for IPF research.

Every share of a video from the Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation website on Twitter or Facebook with the hashtag #kissIPFgoodbye will result in a $5 donation from drug company Boehringer Ingelheim.

“The #kissIPFgoodbye campaign is really groundbreaking,” said McGowan, who is virtually unrecognizable with her hair cut short.

“It’s pretty punk,” she said of the ‘do. “And in a town where you’re born and bred just to be pretty and pleasing all the time, it’s kind of a ‘doing it for yourself.'”

McGowan said she has been going through a personal evolution of late.

“I dyed my hair blonde, which was maybe not advised, when I directed my first film [the short film Dawn],” she explained. “It was just part of a metamorphosis of no longer wanting to be what was expected of me, even though I always kind of did it my own way.

“The last year of my life has been so much about finally just flying and doing what I want to do.”

McGowan, who said she took some time to travel the world, continues to act but seems decidedly less enthralled by Hollywood.

“As early as three years ago I had an agent that told me not to speak as much in meetings because I sounded too intelligent and was threatening to the men,” she said.

“And this is a female agent.”

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