‘OITNB’ Star Yael Stone Accuses Geoffrey Rush of Sexual Misconduct
Yael Stone has come forward with sexual misconduct allegations against Geoffrey Rush.
In a recent interview with the New York Times, the Orange Is The New Black actress recalled working with Rush on the set of The Diary of a Mad Man in 2010 and 2011. She claimed the 67-year-old sent flirtatious and sexually suggestive text messages to her, used a mirror to spy on her in the shower and got "totally naked" in front of her in a dressing room, among other things.
"I was so flattered that someone like that would spend their time texting me into the very early hours of the morning," Stone recalled. "Gradually the text messages became more sexual in nature, but always encased in this very highfalutin intellectual language."
Stone continued, "I remember I looked up to see there was a small shaving mirror over the top of the partition between the showers and he was using it to look down at my naked body. I believe that it was meant with a playful intention, but the effect was that I felt there was nowhere for me to feel safe and unobserved."
She expressed guilt for not having shut down Rush at the time, playing off his advances with "an attitude of, 'Oh, you're a very naughty boy.'" She she was worried about what the actor would think of her if she appeared bothered by his actions.
"I didn't want him to think I was not fun, [or] that I was one of those people who couldn't take a joke," she said. "There was no part of my brain considering speaking to anyone in any official capacity."
She continued, "This was a huge star. What were they going to do? Fire Geoffrey and keep me?"
The actress acknowledged that her account of Rush's behavior may come off as inconsistent based on their close friendship during filming, but said she was conflicted because she viewed him as a mentor.
"I also understand it might be confusing and look strange that I maintained a friendship with someone for so long who treated me in a way that made me feel uncomfortable," she said. "But there is the reality of professional influence and the reality of a complicated friendship, which ultimately was corroded by a sexual dynamic. But it was still a friendship."
Stone isn't the first woman to accuse Rush of misconduct. Allegations first surfaced against him last year, when he was accused of acting inappropriately during an Australian stage production of King Lear. Allegations were made to the Sydney Theatre Company about him, too.
Rush has, again, denied the latest allegations against him. He told the New York Times that they "are incorrect and in some instances have been taken completely out of context." He went on to apologize for behaving in any way that upset Stone.
"Clearly Yael has been upset on occasion by the spirited enthusiasm I generally bring to my work. I sincerely and deeply regret if I have caused her any distress. This, most certainly, has never been my intention," Rush said.