Geoffrey Rush has denied new allegations of inappropriate behaviour, amid an ongoing defamation battle with an Australian newspaper that published sexual harassment claims.
The Australian actor is accused of acting inappropriately towards Orange Is The New Black star Yael Stone as they appeared in a 2010 production of The Diary of A Madman.
In an interview with The New York Times, Stone claims that Rush danced naked in front of her and held a mirror above her while she showered. She also alleges that Stone touched her in a “very sensual” manner and bombarded her with erotic text messages.
“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 explained.
Responding to the allegations in a statement, Rush’s lawyers described the allegations as “incorrect and in some instances have been taken completely out of context”.
“However, clearly Yael has been upset on occasion by the spirited enthusiasm I generally bring to my work,” he said. “I sincerely and deeply regret if I have caused her any distress. This, most certainly, has never been my intention.
“When we performed in The Diary of a Madman eight years ago, I believe we engaged in a journey as artistic comrades. Over the years we have shared correspondence that always contained a mutual respect and admiration.
“As I have said in the past, I abhor any behaviour that might be considered as harassment or intimidation to anyone – whether in the workplace or any other environment.”
Stone says that she told Rush to “bugger off” after he attempted to see her with a small shaving mirror, but feared speaking out in case it had an adverse affect on her career.
“I was walking a very delicate line where I needed to manage these uncomfortable moments but never, never offend him,” she said.
It comes after Rush battles Australia’s Daily Telegraph after the newspaper ran a front page story which alleged that he behaved inappropriately towards actress Eryn-Jean Norvill during their production of King Lear.
Rush has denied the allegations.