Rebel Wilson: Whoopi Goldberg says journalist knew ‘exactly what he was doing’ in ‘outing’ row

·2 min read

Whoopi Goldberg has joined the international backlash against Australian newspaper The Sydney Morning Herald, over its now-removed column about Rebel Wilson’s new relationship.

The comedian and actor came out in an Instagram post last week, writing: “I thought I was searching for a Disney Prince… but maybe what I really needed all this time was a Disney Princess.”

In the post’s photo, Wilson could be seen posing with her new partner, fashion designer Ramona Agruma.

Over the weekend, The Sydney Morning Herald published an article by journalist Andrew Hornery, who said the publication had given Wilson “two days” to comment on her new relationship before they would go ahead and report on it.

In the article, Hornery complained about Wilson preventing him from getting a scoop by going public with the relationship herself.

Following condemnation from fans and fellow members of the press, Hornery apologised and the article was removed. However, the publication denied trying to “out” Wilson.

On Monday (13 June), Goldberg addressed the story on The View, saying: “There’s a lot of speculation that (Wilson came out) to get ahead of a tabloid story in the Sydney Morning Herald about her relationship.

“Now, the man who wrote it even apologised, saying it was ‘never his intention to ‘out her’… Well, you know that’s not true, because if it wasn’t your intention you wouldn’t have done it.”

She added: “If you didn’t want to do it, you shouldn’t have done it – you knew exactly what you were doing.”

In his apology column, Hornery wrote that a “celebrity romance is a happy story”.

“When I started hearing from friends and associates of Rebel that she was in a new relationship, as a gossip columnist I could see that was potentially a story, as her previous boyfriends had been,” he wrote.

“So, after months of posts of the women together on Rebel’s Instagram account – from Oscars parties to Valentine’s Day, and most recently as VIP guests at the gay and lesbian World Pride Polo match in Florida – I assumed there was a good chance she might be happy to discuss it.”

But, the columnist admitted, “we mishandled steps in our approach”.