A complete timeline of Rebel Wilson and Sacha Baron Cohen's feud over the claims about him in her memoir

Rebel Wilson at the Hallmann Entertainment Oscar Dinner and Sacha Baron Cohen at the 2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party.
Rebel Wilson at the Hallmann Entertainment Oscar Dinner and Sacha Baron Cohen at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party.Rachpoot/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images/Stefanie Keenan/VF22/WireImage/Getty Images
  • A chapter of Rebel Wilson's memoir is about her claims that Sacha Baron Cohen harassed her on set.

  • The actors worked together on the action comedy, "The Brothers Grimsby."

  • Wilson claimed that Cohen used lawyers to threaten her memoir.

Rebel Wilson's memoir, "Rebel Rising," features a chapter about her experiences with Sacha Baron Cohen while they were filming the action comedy "The Brothers Grimsby."

The movie, which was released in 2016, stars Cohen as Nobby Butcher, a man from the north of England who discovers that his long-lost brother (Mark Strong) is a spy.

Wilson plays Nobby's girlfriend, Dawn Grobham. For years, Wilson has alleged that Cohen continuously asked her to go nude for the role and that he acted inappropriately with her on set. Most recently, she wrote about the alleged incident in her memoir and has claimed that the "Borat" star hired lawyers to threaten her over its publication.

Cohen has strenuously denied the accusations.

Here's a complete timeline of the drama between Wilson and Cohen, which dates back nearly a decade.

In 2014, Rebel Wilson said Sacha Baron Cohen asked her to put a finger in his butt while filming a scene for 'The Brothers Grimsby'

Rebel Wilson as Dawn and Sacha Baron Cohen as Nobby in "The Brothers Grimsby."
Rebel Wilson as Dawn and Sacha Baron Cohen as Nobby in "The Brothers Grimsby."Sony Pictures Releasing

Wilson first accused Cohen of behaving inappropriately on "The Brothers Grimsby" set in 2014 when she appeared on the "Kyle and Jackie O" radio show in Australia, according to The Courier Mail.

The "Pitch Perfect" star said Cohen kept asking her to go naked for the film, but she didn't want to. She said: "Every day he's like, 'Just go naked. It will be funny. Remember in "Borat" when I did that naked scene? It was hilarious.'"

The star added: "On the last day, I thought I'd obviously won the argument, and he got a body double to do the naked scene."

During the same interview, Wilson also claimed that Cohen sprung the idea of a lewd scene on her during filming.

"Then in the last scene ... he was like, 'Rebel, can you just stick your finger up my butt?' And I went, 'What do you mean, Sacha? That's not in the script,'" she recalled.

She continued: "And he's like, 'Look, I'll just pull down my pants, you just stick your finger up my butt, it'll be a really funny bit.'"

Wilson declined and said she smacked her hand on the star in the scene instead.

In 2017, Wilson discussed being harassed by an unnamed male costar in now-deleted tweets

Three years later, Wilson appeared to discuss the same "Grimsby" incident on then-Twitter now X in two tweets, which have since been deleted.

In the tweets, which Business Insider reported on at the time, she said that an unnamed male costar asked her to perform a lewd act on him in front of his friends, who she said were filming the incident.

Wilson also claimed that the actor's representatives threatened her not to bad mouth him. She didn't name Cohen in the tweets at the time.

In March 2024, Wilson teased that a chapter of her upcoming book would expose an actor she worked with

Wilson announced her memoir, "Rebel Rising," in October 2023, but it wasn't until March 2024 that she told fans how a former male costar was attempting to threaten her over what she'd written about him in the book.

Posting to her Instagram story on March 22, Wilson wrote: "I wrote about an asshole in my book. Now, said asshole is trying to threaten me. He's hired a crisis PR manager and lawyers. He is trying to stop press coming out about my book."

Wilson said the book would come out regardless, "and you will all know the truth."

Days later, Wilson finally named Cohen as the person she says hired lawyers to threaten her memoir

On March 24, Wilson posted another Instagram story naming Cohen as the "asshole" she'd written about in "Rebel Rising."

"I will not be bullied or silenced by high priced lawyers or crisis PR managers. The 'asshole' I am talking about in ONE CHAPTER of my book is: Sacha Baron Cohen."

On Tuesday, People magazine published an excerpt from Wilson's book detailing her claims about Cohen's behavior

On Tuesday, People published an excerpt from "Rebel Rising," in which Wilson alleges that Cohen frequently asked her to go nude in "The Brothers Grimsby."

"It felt like every time I'd speak to SBC, he'd mention that he wanted me to go naked in a future scene. I was like, 'Ha, I don't do nudity, Sacha.'"

Writing about a scene in the film shot in Cape Town, Wilson says: "SBC summons me via a production assistant saying that I'm needed to film an additional scene. 'Okay, well, we're gonna film this extra scene,' SBC says."

"Then he pulls his pants down … SBC says very matter-of-factly: 'Okay, now I want you to stick your finger up my ass.' And I'm like, 'What?? … No!!'"

"I was now scared. I wanted to get out of there, so I finally compromised: I slapped him on the ass and improvised a few lines as the character," she continues.

Cohen's representatives have denied Wilson's allegations and provided anonymous source statements in his defense

A spokesperson for Cohen denied the allegations in an emailed statement to BI on March 25, the day after Wilson publicly named him on her Instagram story.

They wrote: "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.'"

On March 28, Cohen's spokesperson also provided BI (via email) with nine statements from anonymous crew members, producers, and writers who said they worked with Cohen and Wilson on "The Brothers Grimsby."

Several of the unnamed sources, including a producer, a writer/producer, an assistant director, and a cameraman who all say they were present during the alleged incident, say that Wilson's recounting of the events is inaccurate and that the incident took place on a professional movie set, not in a "room" as she'd characterized it in her 2017 tweets.

"As per the script, which Rebel had read and approved in advance, her character was attempting to put a finger in Sacha's character's butt," the unnamed producer's statement read, in part. "At no point did Sacha actually ask her to put a finger in his butt, or any other of his body's orifices, for that matter."

That producer also said Wilson was "treated with the utmost respect and empowerment" as a creative collaborator and claimed that Wilson and Cohen had a "good relationship" until Wilson saw an early cut of the movie that cut out several of her improvised scenes, which the source deemed "frankly very problematic." According to the producer, the cuts made Wilson "extremely angry" and resulted in her hostility toward Cohen.

An anonymous executive producer also echoed that the scene Wilson described was in the "approved shooting script" and said they'd never received any notice about Wilson's concerns about the scene before or after shooting.

Several of the statements said that they never personally witnessed or heard about any bad behavior on Cohen's part and that the set was very professional.

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