Newly released court documents allege that Oscar-winning actor Geoffrey Rush was involved in confrontation that left his co-star “visibly upset”, Guardian reported. The incident reportedly occurred at a party following the 2015 Sydney Theatre Company production of King Lear, in which Rush played the lead role. The documents claim that the actor entered the theatre’s female bathroom to follow the colleague before being told to leave.

Filed by News Corp subsidiary Nationwide News, the document is part of its defence against the defamation proceedings brought by Rush against the publisher. The actor is suing Nationwide News and journalist Jonathon Moran over articles published by Daily Telegraph in November and December last year, which reported that Rush allegedly touched a female colleague inappropriately during the performance of King Lear. The document reportedly stated that the touch was “not directed or scripted by any person or necessary for the purpose of the performance of the production”.

The actor continued to touch his co-star in the same way on four other occasions in the final week of the play’s run despite being told to “stop doing it”. The articles were published after the theatre company released a statement saying it had received a complaint against Rush alleging “inappropriate behaviour” during the production.

Rush regarded the allegations made in the article as “spurious claims with bombastic titles”, adding that they made him seem like a “pervert” and a “sexual predator” who had “committed sexual assault”.