The Biggest Bombshells from Rebel Wilson’s New Memoir: Sex, A Difficult Childhood and Fertility Struggles

Wilson tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue that she hopes people “find some inspiration” in her new memoir, ‘Rebel Rising’

<p>Karwai Tang/WireImage; Simon & Schuster</p> Rebel Wilson and her new memoir

Karwai Tang/WireImage; Simon & Schuster

Rebel Wilson and her new memoir

Rebel Wilson is opening up about her past, and sharing details about her rollercoaster life, in her very personal new memoir.

The Pitch Perfect star, 44, has written an intimate memoir, Rebel Rising, which hits shelves on April 2, to share her experiences in her own words.

Recalling how she was often called "brave" in her early days in Hollywood, she tells PEOPLE, “Did I fight in war? Run into a burning building? No. It was that I dared to exist in a town where only thin women were valued.”

Wilson also reveals details of her childhood in Australia, her relationship with her fiancée Ramona Agruma, her fertility journey and some harrowing moments from her career. She shares her story “with the hope that people might find some inspiration. Maybe some people thought it was brave, but I was just being myself.” 

Here are the biggest bombshells from Wilson’s memoir Rebel Rising.

Wilson’s father could be explosive at times

<p>Samir Hussein/WireImage</p> Rebel Wilson

Samir Hussein/WireImage

Rebel Wilson

When reflecting on her childhood, Wilson writes that her parents, Sue and Warwick Bownds, worked on the dog show circuit and her family was, she says, "one baby step above being carnies." She experienced a difficult relationship with her volatile father, including, as she writes, “30 seconds of terror” one day, when she and her sister, Liberty, wet their mattresses with water to cool down during a hot summer in Australia.

“Dad comes in. ‘What the hell are you two doing?!’ He brings his palm up and hits me. Whack. He hits my sister too," she writes. As the eldest, Wilson says that she was hit the hardest.

After Wilson’s father died from a heart attack in 2013, Wilson wrote him a letter that she tucked into his pocket. She forgave him and wrote that she would “strive to find love” and “no longer be afraid of it.”

She filmed Bridesmaids during ‘one of the loneliest years’ of her life

<p>Suzanne Hanover/Universal Pictures/Courtesy Everett </p> Rebel Wilson in 'Bridesmaids'

Suzanne Hanover/Universal Pictures/Courtesy Everett

Rebel Wilson in 'Bridesmaids'

Wilson writes that the period of filming Bridesmaids was “one of the loneliest years of my life,” and that after she paid her rent, she only had $60 left to live on. After the movie’s premiere, she describes how she went back to her one-bedroom apartment in Los Angeles and ate in front of the television in her pajamas.

Related: Rebel Wilson Shows Off the 'Bridesmaids' Ring Director Sent Her for Movie's 10-Year Anniversary

“I remove my makeup and take out the hairpieces,” she writes. “I look at myself in the mirror. 'See, women are funny!' I say to myself. Then I head to the freezer, pull out a pint of ice cream and celebrate by eating in front of the TV in an oversize Disneyland nightie until I can’t stay awake anymore."

The star didn’t have sex until she was in her 30s

<p>Gareth Cattermole/amfAR/Getty</p> Rebel Wilson

Gareth Cattermole/amfAR/Getty

Rebel Wilson

Wilson didn’t lose her virginity until she was 35, she reveals in the book, and she was initially “terrified” when it came to physical intimacy.

“I was either so innocent, in my teens, or so busy making myself look grotesquely unattractive for comedic purposes, that no romantic opportunity ever presented itself,” she writes. The book reveals that she lost her virginity to Mickey Gooch Jr., whom she met via a set up and became intimate while filming How to Be Single.

"Mickey flew in that weekend," she writes. "And then it just happens. I finally have sex. It feels amazing. I go to the bathroom and high-five myself. I like my new wild sexual self."

Related: Rebel Wilson Lost Her Virginity at 35 — and Wants to Take the 'Pressure' Off Other Late-Bloomers by Sharing Her Story (Exclusive)

She writes about feeling humiliated by Sacha Baron Cohen

<p>Getty (2)</p> Rebel Wilson and Sacha Baron Cohen

Getty (2)

Rebel Wilson and Sacha Baron Cohen

Wilson writes about her experience working with Sacha Baron Cohen on the 2016 movie The Brothers Grimsby. She says she felt humiliated by the comedian, 52, and claims that he asked her to perform a lewd act while they were making the movie in South Africa. Baron Cohen vehemently denies ever saying that or mistreating Wilson.

His rep said in a statement: “While we appreciate the importance of speaking out, these demonstrably false claims are directly contradicted by extensive detailed evidence, including contemporaneous documents, film footage and eyewitness accounts from those present before, during and after the production of The Brothers Grimsby.”

Wilson writes, "The movie bombed, which to me was karma enough. I’m not about canceling anybody and that’s not my motivation for sharing this story. I’m sharing my story now because the more women talk about things like this, hopefully the less it happens.”

Wilson experienced fertility struggles before her daughter arrived

<p><a href="" data-component="link" data-source="inlineLink" data-type="externalLink" data-ordinal="1">Cliff Watts</a></p> Rebel with her daughter, Royce, and fiancee, Ramona

Cliff Watts

Rebel with her daughter, Royce, and fiancee, Ramona

Wilson writes that in 2020, a fertility doctor told her if she lost weight, she would have a better chance of harvesting quality eggs. But even after losing 80 pounds, a fertility doctor told her that the embryos she'd created with a sperm donor didn't "appear strong enough" to be viable.  "I feel such sadness," she writes. "I’m so alone and I don’t know what to do."

After another round of egg-harvesting, her "last viable embryo" was implanted in a surrogate. Wilson welcomed daughter Royce Lillian in November 2022, with her fiancée Ramona Agruma by her side.

Related: Rebel Wilson Reveals Daughter Royce's First — and Now Favorite - Word: 'It Melts My Heart' (Exclusive)

"She opens her eyes, and she looks at us," Wilson writes of the birth of her daughter. "We’re a family now."

She was paid $3,500 for Bridesmaids — but later negotiated her salary to be much higher

<p>Peter Iovino/Universal Pictures/Courtesy Everett</p> Rebel Wilson in 'Pitch Perfect'

Peter Iovino/Universal Pictures/Courtesy Everett

Rebel Wilson in 'Pitch Perfect'

Wilson reveals that her pay for Bridesmaids was only $3,500, and that the money went toward paying her Screen Actors Guild (SAG) dues so she could join the union. Even though she writes that she “got paid nothing,” she says that the experience of shooting the movie “was everything.”

Wilson, however, wasn’t afraid to negotiate her salary later down the line. She writes that toward the end of filming Pitch Perfect 2, she and costars Anna Camp, Anna Kendrick and Brittany Snow were told that they would be replaced by younger actresses. After Pitch Perfect 2 became the highest-grossing musical comedy, Wilson says that she and the original actresses “totally had the leverage.” Wilson ended up signing a $10 million deal.

“Cue the big bucks. Cue us girls now living it up in a high-rise building in downtown Atlanta, dancing behind the huge floor-to-ceiling glass windows, loving life” she writes.

She had to end a Jenny Craig weight loss deal to play Fat Amy in Pitch Perfect

<p>Mike Marsland/WireImage</p> Rebel Wilson

Mike Marsland/WireImage

Rebel Wilson

Prior to joining Pitch Perfect, Wilson writes that she was given a Jenny Craig weight loss deal in Australia, and that she had already lost nearly 22 pounds before filming the first movie. However, after noticing that her contract stated she wasn't allowed to change her appearance, Wilson ended the Jenny Craig deal.

“If the role of Fat Amy had never come along, I would’ve stuck with the Jenny Craig deal and probably would’ve successfully lost the 66 pounds (30 kilos) I had promised them,” she writes.

Sparks flew between Wilson and Adam Devine on the Pitch Perfect set

<p>Jeff Spicer/Getty; Robin L Marshall/WireImage</p> Rebel Wilson and Adam Devine

Jeff Spicer/Getty; Robin L Marshall/WireImage

Rebel Wilson and Adam Devine

Wilson notes that she was particularly smitten with her Pitch Perfect costar Adam Devine, who played Barden Treblemakers leader Bumper Allen. Wilson writes that they both “naturally gravitated” toward each other, since they were the two comedians in the cast.

Related: 'Pitch Perfect' Reunion! Rebel Wilson and Adam Devine Hang Out at Super Bowl 2021

“I thought he was so cute and funny, but off set, I thought he’d never go for a girl like me,” she writes. “He started dating Kelley, the quieter, cuter blonde in the Bellas. Funny guys don’t wanna sleep with funny girls! I wanted to sleep with funny guys, though…I just tried to forget my urges.”

The star went to a Biggest Loser Resort to try and lose weight

<p>Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images for Vanity Fair</p> Rebel Wilson

Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images for Vanity Fair

Rebel Wilson

Wilson reveals that, in 2015, she attended a Biggest Loser Resort in Palm Desert. She describes the health retreat as “like the TV show,” where people did eight hours of daily exercise, ate healthy foods and were supported by “a great staff.” She recalls that she got along well with other attendees.

“There was a real camaraderie as we were all trying to better our lives and get healthier," she writes. "We supported each other as we did three-minute wall squats under the blazing sun, push-ups and planks and then a mile run...and that was just hour one."

She attended a tech billionaire’s party in Los Angeles — and it turned into an orgy

<p>Nathan Congleton/NBC via Getty</p> Rebel Wilson

Nathan Congleton/NBC via Getty

Rebel Wilson

Wilson recalls attending the party of an unnamed tech billionaire at a ranch outside of Los Angeles. The party had a medieval theme, with men jousting on horses and women dressed as mermaids. Wilson, however, realized that there were other, unadvertised plans for the evening.

“Now the comment by the Windsor about needing more girls started to make a lot more sense,” she writes. “They weren’t talking about a boy-girl ratio like it was a year-eight disco. They were talking about an ORGY!”

She reminisces that Jacob Busch “knew how to please a woman”

SC Pool - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Rebel Wilson and Jacob Busch
SC Pool - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Rebel Wilson and Jacob Busch

Wilson writes that a friend set her up with Jacob Busch, a member of the wealthy Busch family, known for Budweiser beer and Busch Gardens. The couple first met in 2019, and Wilson says that she originally didn't know his family.

“He dressed impeccably. He had great manners and style,” she writes. “Aaaand, let me tell you, he knew how to please a woman in the bedroom! I thought, ‘Who is this Disney prince? He’s absolutely perfect.’” The couple split in 2021.

Related: Rebel Wilson's Relationship Timeline with Jacob Busch

She had a “situationship” with a female tennis player

<p>Gilbert Flores/Variety via Getty</p> Rebel Wilson

Gilbert Flores/Variety via Getty

Rebel Wilson

Wilson writes about her experience with an unnamed female tennis player, and feeling “majorly attracted to this girl.” Wilson first met the woman in 2018, and the two continued to see each other in New York, leading to a complex “situationship.”

“I couldn’t let go of her. I kept hanging in there—like a koala clinging every day to a eucalyptus tree,” she writes.

She opened up about the moment when her daughter, Royce, stopped growing in utero

<p>Rebel Wilson/Instagram</p> Rebel Wilson with daughter Royce and fiancée Ramona Agruma

Rebel Wilson/Instagram

Rebel Wilson with daughter Royce and fiancée Ramona Agruma

Wilson opened up about her experience using a surrogate, and the terrifying moment when the baby stopped growing. Wilson writes that her doctor told her that the baby — her daughter Royce — had tested positive for alcohol. However, Wilson noted that it was the result of malfunctioning lab equipment leading to incorrect test results, and that the surrogate wasn’t positive for alcohol.

“We still don’t know why my precious baby girl stopped growing for a month, but after some steroid shots she grew to over five pounds, which is what the doctors were hoping for before birth,” Wilson writes.

Related: Rebel Wilson Celebrates Daughter Royce's 1st Birthday with Cake and Festive Party — See the Photos! 

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