Rush at the 2017 Berlin Film Festival
Geoffrey Roy Rush
6 July 1951
|Residence||Camberwell, Victoria, Australia|
|Other names||Geoff Rush|
|Education||Everton Park State High School|
|Alma mater||University of Queensland (BA)|
Jane Menelaus (m. 1988)
|Awards||Academy Award, British Academy Film Award, Golden Globe Award, Primetime Emmy Award, Screen Actors Guild Award, Tony Award|
Geoffrey Roy Rush AC (born 6 July 1951) is an Australian actor. Rush is amongst 24 people who have won the Triple Crown of Acting: an Academy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, and a Tony Award. He has won one Academy Award for acting (of four nominations), three British Academy Film Awards (of five nominations), two Golden Globe Awards, and four Screen Actors Guild Awards. Rush is the founding president of the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts and was named the 2012 Australian of the Year. He is also the first actor to win the Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Critics' Choice Movie Award, Golden Globe Award, and Screen Actors Guild Award for a single performance in film for his performance as piano prodigy David Helfgott in Shine (1996).
- 1 Early life
- 2 Stage career
- 3 Film career
- 4 Personal life
- 5 Sexual misconduct allegations
- 6 Filmography
- 7 Awards and nominations
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Rush was born in Toowoomba, Queensland, the son of Merle (Bischof), a department store sales assistant, and Roy Baden Rush, an accountant for the Royal Australian Air Force. His father was of English, Irish, and Scottish ancestry, and his mother was of German descent. His parents divorced when he was five, and his mother subsequently took him to live with her parents in suburban Brisbane. Before he began his acting career, Rush attended Brisbane State High School, and graduated from the University of Queensland with a bachelor's degree in Arts. While at university, he was talent-spotted by Queensland Theatre Company (QTC) in Brisbane. Rush began his career with QTC in 1971, appearing in 17 productions.
In 1975, Rush went to Paris for two years and studied mime, movement and theatre at L'École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq, before returning to resume his stage career with QTC. In 1979, he shared an apartment with actor Mel Gibson for four months while they co-starred in a stage production of Waiting for Godot.
Rush made his theatre debut in the QTC's production of Wrong Side of the Moon. He worked with the QTC for four years, appearing in roles ranging across classical plays and pantomime, from Juno and the Paycock to Hamlet on Ice. Following these, Rush left for Paris where he studied further.
Rush's acting credits include William Shakespeare's plays The Winter's Tale (with the State Theatre Company of South Australia in 1987 at The Playhouse in Adelaide) and Troilus and Cressida (at the Old Museum Building in 1989). He also appeared in an ongoing production of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest as John Worthing (Ernest) (in which his wife, Jane Menelaus, appeared as Gwendolen).
In September 1998, Rush played the title role in the Beaumarchais play The Marriage of Figaro for the QTC. This was the opening production of the Optus Playhouse at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre at South Bank in Brisbane. A pun on Rush's name (and the circumstances) was used in the opening prologue of the play with the comment that the "Optus Playhouse was opening with a Rush".
Rush has appeared on stage for the Brisbane Arts Theatre and in many other theatre venues. He has also worked as a theatre director. In 2007, he starred as King Berenger in a production of Eugène Ionesco's Exit the King at the Malthouse Theatre in Melbourne and Company B in Sydney, directed by Neil Armfield. For this performance, he received a Helpmann Award nomination for best male actor in a play.
Rush made his Broadway debut in a re-staging of Exit the King under Malthouse Theatre's touring moniker Malthouse Melbourne and Company B Belvoir. This re-staging featured a new American cast including Susan Sarandon. The show opened on 26 March 2009 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre. Rush won the Outer Critics Circle Award, Theatre World Award, Drama Desk Award, the Distinguished Performance Award from the Drama League Award and the 2009 Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play.
In 2010, Rush played Man in Chair in The Drowsy Chaperone on its Australian tour.
In 2011, Rush played the lead in a theatrical adaptation of Nikolai Gogol's short story The Diary of a Madman at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. He won for this role the Helpmann Award and was nominated for the Drama Desk Award.
From November 2011, Rush played the role of Lady Bracknell in the Melbourne Theatre Company production of The Importance of Being Earnest. Other actors from the 1988 production include Jane Menelaus, this time as Miss Prism, and Bob Hornery, who had played Canon Chasuble, as the two butlers.
Rush made his film debut in the Australian film Hoodwink in 1981. His next film was Gillian Armstrong's Starstruck, the following year. In the coming years he appeared in small roles on television dramas, including a role as a dentist in a 1993 episode of the British television series Lovejoy. He made his breakthrough performance in 1996 with Shine, for which he won the Academy Award for Best Actor. That same year, James L. Brooks flew him to Los Angeles to audition for the part of Simon Bishop in As Good as It Gets and offered him the role, but Rush declined it (it went to Greg Kinnear).
In 1999, Rush took the lead role as Steven Price in the horror film House on Haunted Hill. In 2000, he received his third Academy Award nomination, for Quills, in which he played the Marquis de Sade, and he voiced the role of Bunyip Bluegum in The Magic Pudding.
Rush's career continued at a fast pace, with nine films released from 2001 to 2003. He starred in the film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, as Captain Hector Barbossa, reprising the role in its sequels, Dead Man's Chest, At World's End, On Stranger Tides and Dead Men Tell No Tales.
Rush reprised his character's voice for the enhancements at the Pirates of the Caribbean attractions at the Disneyland and Magic Kingdom theme parks, which involved an audio-animatronic with Rush's likeness being installed (including one at Tokyo Disneyland). He also voiced Nigel the pelican in Finding Nemo.
Rush played actor Peter Sellers in the television film The Life and Death of Peter Sellers. For this performance, he won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie, Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film, and Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie. In 2005, he appeared in Steven Spielberg's Munich as Ephraim, a Mossad agent.
In the beginning of 2009, Rush appeared in a series of special edition postage stamps featuring some of Australia's internationally recognised actors. He, Cate Blanchett, Russell Crowe, and Nicole Kidman each appear twice in the series. Rush's image is taken from Shine.
Rush returned as Captain Hector Barbossa in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, starring Johnny Depp, in 2011. Rush is also preparing for a film version of The Drowsy Chaperone, an award-winning stage musical. In addition, he voiced the alien Tomar-Re in the film adaptation of the Green Lantern comic book series.
In August 2011, Rush was appointed the foundation president of the newly formed Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts. He resigned from the post in December 2017 after Sydney Theatre Company announced they had received an accusation of inappropriate behaviour against him.
Sexual misconduct allegations
Defamation case against The Daily Telegraph
On 30 November 2017, the Sydney tabloid newspaper The Daily Telegraph published a front-page article alleging that Rush engaged in "inappropriate behaviour" onstage with a co-star during the Sydney Theatre Company's 2015 production of King Lear. The story contained no corroboration for the allegations, though the STC divulged to the Telegraph that they had received a complaint about alleged sexual harassment by Rush. Eryn Jean Norvill, who had starred as Cordelia alongside Rush, alleged that the actor had touched her inappropriately without her consent and that he had followed her into a toilet during an after-party.
The Telegraph's story was picked up by The Advertiser in Adelaide and The Courier-Mail in Brisbane – all published by subsidiaries of News Corp Australia – but not by the Herald Sun in Melbourne, because of concerns that the Telegraph was "running with a yarn which is highly libellous". Rush denied the allegations and, on 8 December 2017, announced that he had filed a defamation suit with the Federal Court of Australia, charging that the Telegraph "made false, pejorative and demeaning claims, splattering them with unrelenting bombast on its front pages".
In court, the Telegraph argued that the story was "substantially true", but Rush's lawyers persuaded the judge to disallow the paper's truth defence on the grounds that the printed allegations the paper was defending were too "vague and imprecise" for Rush to rebut them for his own defence. The Telegraph unsuccessfully attempted to subpoena the STC for documentation supporting its plea against Rush. In an affidavit, Rush stated that as a result of the allegations, he had been suffering from anxiety, insomnia and loss of appetite, and felt that "his worth to the theatre and film industry is now irreparably damaged".
In August 2018, after months of back-and-forth between the Telegraph and Rush himself, Norvill agreed to testify in court for the Telegraph, leading their original truth defence to be reinstated. Rush and his lawyers did not object, as they wanted to get the lawsuit resolved "as quickly as possible". The court also promptly denied the Telegraph's bid to bring a fellow cast member, Colin Moody, as a witness, ruling that it would "disadvantage" Rush and was submitted too late.
During the opening week of the trial, director Neil Armfield spoke in support of Rush. When testifying over a text sent by Rush to Norvill about him "thinking of you more than is socially appropriate", Rush said that he was only using mentoring talk and that a drooling emoji sent to her was the closest to one he wanted to send. Armfield testified that he did not recall saying to Rush that what he was "doing was bordering on creepy". After Norvill's testimony, actor Mark Winter testified in support of Norvill before the defence rested their case. In closing arguments, Rush's attorneys claimed that Telegraph journalist Jonathan Moran was looking for "a Weinstein story" and was "motivated by malice".
The trial was concluded on 9 November 2018. On 11 April 2019, the judge ruled in favour of Rush, awarding him $850,000. In his written statement defending his ruling, Justice Wigney said that none of Norvill's claims were proven substantially true and that Rush's evidence was overwhelming. He also criticised the Telegraph for "recklessly irresponsible pieces of sensationalist journalism of the very worst kind".
On 16 December 2018, The New York Times published an interview with Australian actress Yael Stone, who accused Rush of sexual misconduct during the production of a theatre adaptation of Diary of a Madman in 2010 and 2011. She alleged that he had sent her sexually inappropriate texts, had touched her back at an awards show in a "significant enough violation that he wrote to her and apologized", had held a mirror above her shower cubicle while she was showering, and had danced naked in front of her while they were in the dressing room.
Rush responded in a statement to the Times through his attorneys, saying that Stone's allegations were "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. I sincerely and deeply regret if I have caused her any distress. This, most certainly, has never been my intention."
Awards and nominations
Triple Crown of Acting
|1999||Best Supporting Actor||Shakespeare in Love||Nominated|
|2011||Best Supporting Actor||The King's Speech||Nominated|
|2009||Best Leading Actor in a Play||Exit the King||Won|
Emmy Awards (Primetime)
|2005||Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Television Movie||The Life and Death of Peter Sellers||Won|
Drama Desk Awards
|2009||Actor in a Play||Exit the King||Won|
|2011||Actor in a Play||Diary of a Madman||Nominated|
Film and television awards
Golden Globe Awards
|1997||Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama||Shine||Won|
|1999||Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture||Shakespeare in Love||Nominated|
|2001||Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama||Quills||Nominated|
|2005||Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film||The Life and Death of Peter Sellers||Won|
|2011||Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture||The King's Speech||Nominated|
|2018||Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film||Genius||Nominated|
Screen Actors Guild Award
|1999||Best Actor||Shakespeare in Love||Nominated|
|1999||Best Cast||Shakespeare in Love||Won|
|2005||Best Actor in a Miniseries of TV Movie||The Life and Death of Peter Sellers||Won|
|2011||Best Supporting Actor||The King's Speech||Nominated|
|2011||Best Cast||The King's Speech||Won|
|2017||Best Actor in a Miniseries of TV Movie||Genius||Nominated|
|1997||Best Actor in a Leading Role||Shine||Won|
|1999||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Elizabeth||Won|
|1999||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Shakespeare in Love||Nominated|
|2001||Best Actor in a Leading Role||Quills||Nominated|
|2011||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||The King's Speech||Won|
AACTA / AFI Awards
|1996||Best Actor in a Leading Role||Shine||Won|
|1998||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||A Little Bit of Soul||Nominated|
|2002||Best Actor in a Leading Role||Swimming Upstream||Nominated|
|2006||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Candy||Nominated|
|2011||Best Actor in a Leading Role||The Eye of the Storm||Nominated|
|2001||Best Male Actor in a Play||The Small Poppies||Nominated|
|2008||Best Male Actor in a Play||Exit the King||Nominated|
|2010||Best Male Actor in a Musical||The Drowsy Chaperone||Nominated|
|2011||Best Male Actor in a Play||The Diary of a Madman||Won|
|2013||Best Male Actor in a Musical||A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum||Won|
- Awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters by the University of Queensland, in Australia.
- Awarded the Australian Centenary Medal in the 2001 Queen's New Year's Honours List for his services to the arts especially through a distinguished acting career.
- 1994: Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards
- 2003: Hollywood Film Festival – Supporting Actor of the Year
- 2003: Australian Film Institute Award – Global Achievement Award
- 2004: Brisbane International Film Festival – Chauvel Award
- 2009: Australian Film Institute Longford Life Achievement Award
- 2011: Santa Barbara International Film Festival – Montecito Award
- 2012: Australian of the Year
- Appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) in 2014, Australia's second-highest highest civilian honour, for eminent service to the arts as a theatre performer, motion picture actor and film producer, as a role model and mentor for aspiring artists, and through support for, and promotion of, the Australian arts industry.
- In 2009 as part of the Q150 celebrations, Rush was announced as one of the Q150 Icons of Queensland for his role as an "Influential Artist".
- "Geoffrey Rush". Front Row. 1 May 2013. BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
- "Geoffrey Rush". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
- Australian of the Year Awards 2012 Recipients Archived 27 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- Singer, Jill (24 March 2008). "Rush to flat earth". Herald Sun.
- Geoffrey Rush biography. Film Reference.com.
- Geoffrey Rush Biography Archived 30 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine. Tiscali.film & tv.
- "Geoffrey Rush". IMDb.
- Stated on Who Do You Think You Are?, 4 August 2015
- Geoffrey Rush biography. Yahoo! Movies.
- Geoffrey Rush, 1997 Academy award winner. Alumni at University of Queensland.
- "Past nominees and Winners". Helpmann Awards. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
- "Tony Awards – Search Past Tony Award Winners and Nominations". Tony Award Productions 2000. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
- "Past nominees and Winners". Helpmann Awards. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
- "The Importance of Being Earnest". Melbourne Theatre Company. Archived from the original on 2 April 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
- Craven, Peter (12 November 2011). "The importance of being Geoffrey Rush". The Australian. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Aiton, Douglas (4–5 September 2004). "10 Things You Didn't Know About Geoffrey Rush". Weekend Australian Magazine. p. 12.
- "Geoffrey Rush". Television Academy.
- Silverman, Stephen M. (4 February 2009). "Cate Blanchett, Nicole Kidman Happy to Be Licked – On Stamps". People.
- "Geoffrey Rush to Take a Seat in Drowsy Chaperone Film". Broadway.com. Retrieved 13 September 2010.
- Vilensky, Mike (30 March 2011). "Geoffrey Rush Joins Green Lantern". New York. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
- on YouTube (23 June 2011). Retrieved 27 November 2011.
- "Rush named president of Australian Oscars". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 19 August 2011.
- "Geoffrey Rush quits industry post over 'inappropriate behaviour' claim". The Guardian. Associated Press. 2 December 2017.
- Spencer, Adam; Champness, Lawrence (21 January 2011). "The King's Speech: From Geoffrey Rush's letterbox to the big screen". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 7 September 2012.
- Malone, Ursula (20 February 2018). "Geoffrey Rush defamation case: Details emerge of allegation he touched actress' genitals". ABC.com.au. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
- Barry, Paul (4 December 2017). "The rush to convict Geoffrey Rush". ABC.com.au. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
- "Actor Geoffrey Rush sues Australian newspaper over 'inappropriate behavior' report". Reuters. 8 December 2017. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
- Davidson, Helen (19 March 2018). "News Corp's truth defence thrown out in Geoffrey Rush defamation case". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
- "Geoffrey Rush: Daily Telegraph loses bid to bring theatre company into lawsuit". Australian Associated Press. 20 April 2018. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
- Raper, Ashleigh (9 April 2018). "Geoffrey Rush's lawyers claim articles have left him virtually housebound, barely eating and with a ruined career". ABC.com.au. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
- Wingett, Fiona (3 August 2018). "Actress agrees to testify for Daily Telegraph in Geoffrey Rush lawsuit". news.au.com.
- "Geoffrey Rush lands small win as Nationwide News witness is rejected". ABC News. 10 October 2018.
- Benns, Matthew; Hughes Jones, Lucy (25 October 2018). "Geoffrey Rush case: Cast member says actor's use of emoji was an example of mentoring". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 21 January 2019.
- Sas, Nick (22 October 2018). "Geoffrey Rush says 'thinking of you' text message to actress during King Lear production was a joke". ABC News. Retrieved 21 January 2019.
- Pelly, Michael (25 October 2018). "King Lear director Neil Armfield watched stage 'like a hawk' in Geoffrey Rush case". Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 21 January 2019.
- "Actor Rush wins defamation case". www.bbc.com. BBC News. 11 April 2019. Retrieved 11 April 2019.
- McKinnell, Jamie. "Geoffrey Rush wins defamation case against Nationwide News, publisher of The Daily Telegraph". ABC News. Retrieved 11 April 2019.
- Davidson, Helen (11 April 2019). "Geoffrey Rush defamation case: actor set to win millions from News Corp" – via www.theguardian.com.
- Weiss, Bari (16 December 2018). "The Cost of Telling a #MeToo Story in Australia". The New York Times. Retrieved 17 December 2018.
- Yang, Rachel (18 December 2018). "'OITNB' Actress Yael Stone Accuses Geoffrey Rush of Sexual Harassment". Variety. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
- Tartaglione, Nancy; Tartaglione, Nancy (11 May 2017). "IM Global's Anthem Gets 'Real' & More; Geoffrey Rush, Jai Courtney Join 'Storm Boy' – Cannes Briefs".
- "Geoffrey Rush". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
- "Australian of the Year 2012". National Australia Day Council. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
- "Companion (AC) in the general division of the Order of Australia at the 2014 Australia Day honours" (pdf). Official Secretary to the Governor-General of Australia. 26 January 2014. p. 5. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Geoffrey Rush.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Geoffrey Rush|
- Geoffrey Rush on IMDb
- Geoffrey Rush at the Internet Broadway Database
- Geoffrey Rush – Stage acting credits
- Professional photographs of Geoffrey Rush – National Library of Australia
|New title|| President of the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts
|Awards and achievements|
| Australian of the Year