Geoffrey Rush Resigns From Australian Academy Over Allegations of Inappropriate Behavior
Art and Experience: Oscar- and Golden Globe-winning actor Geoffrey Rush resigned Saturday as president of the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts. The move follows allegations earlier in the week of inappropriate behavior, and comes just days before the academy hands out its annual awards.
One of the world’s best-known performers, Rush has credits that include “The King’s Speech,” “Pirates of the Caribbean” and “Shakespeare in Love.” He won the Best Actor Oscar for “Shine.”
The allegations against him emerged Wednesday when the Sydney Theatre Company revealed that it had received a complaint about Rush after he appeared in “King Lear” there two years ago. Neither the STC nor Rush have provided any detail of the allegations.
Rush has accused the STC of smearing his name. But in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal and other sexual harassment allegations that have rocked the entertainment industry, his denials have failed to quell the storm.
On Saturday, the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts, or AACTA, said it accepted and respected Rush’s decision “to voluntarily step aside” as the organization’s president. “We have been deeply concerned about the situation and support a course of action that both respects Geoffrey’s rights to the presumption of innocence and due process, but also acknowledges good corporate governance in these circumstances,” the AACTA said in a statement posted to its website.