New developments in Geoffrey Rush’s defamation case against The Daily Telegraph and journalist Jonathon Moran have seen the actor defend sending a colleague a “winking emoji” text message.
Rush allegedly sent actor Eryn Jean Norvill a message with the “tongue out” emoji, and signed the text off with “Gregarious Raunch”.
The 67-year-old actor denied the message was in any way meant to untoward, instead claiming it was a reference to a Groucho Max joke.
He said: “If there’d been a Groucho emoji, I would have punctuated with that.”
Adding: “[It] was the looniest emoji I could find. If Fozzie Bear had been there, I would have used Fozzie bear. I am a great emoji user.’’
Rush is suing both The Daily Telegraph publisher Nationwide News and journalist Jonathon Moran for defamation after the paper ran articles claiming Rush had harassed a female co-star.
The actor claimed the Tele made him out to look like a “pervert” and “sexual predator”.
Norvill claimed Rush made “groping gestures” when they worked on play King Lear together.
The actor announced his intention to sue The Tele in December last year.
In late November of last year, The Tele published a cover page story under the headline “King Leer” that Rush had acted inappropriately during the Sydney Theatre Company’s production of King Learwhich ran from November 2015 to January 2016.