Last week, Rebel Wilson revealed that she is in a relationship with fashion designer Ramona Agruma by sharing a photo of the pair on social media.
In a sweet post, she told her 11 million Instagram followers: ‘I thought I was searching for a Disney Prince… but maybe what I really needed all this time was a Disney Princess #loveislove.’
The Pitch Perfect star was congratulated on the happy news by her celebrity friends and fans alike, and picture of the couple received almost two million likes.
While she kept her identity private, in May Rebel told People magazine that she met her partner through a mutual friend, adding: ‘We spoke on the phone for weeks before meeting. And that was a really good way to get to know each other. It was a bit old-school in that sense — very romantic.’
However, since she shared details about Ramona on Friday, a column was published in Australian newspaper The Sydney Morning Herald revealing that they had contacted Rebel about her relationship and had given her ‘two days’ to comment before the published a story about it.
In the article – which has since been removed – journalist Andrew Hornery said he was ‘gazumped’ by her announcement on Instagram, leading many to criticise the paper for attempting to run the story and ‘out’ Rebel.
Journalist Kate Doak wrote on Twitter: ‘So apparently it wasn’t @RebelWilson’s choice to come out… The @smh/@theage have admitted to giving her a heads up 2 days in advance that they were going to ‘out’ her.’
Rebel has since commented on the situation, replying: ‘Thanks for your comments, it was a very hard situation but trying to handle it with grace.’
The Editor of the paper, Bevan Shields, denied that they were trying to ‘out’ Rebel and addressed the backlash with a statement saying: ‘The article has promoted some public attention and I’ve been reading this feedback closely. In the interests of transparency I wanted to offer The Herald’s view on this issue.
‘Our weekly Private Sydney celebrity column last week asked Wilson if she wished to comment about her new partner. We would have asked the same questions had Wilson’s new partner been a man.
‘To say that The Herald ‘outed’ Wilson is wrong. Like other mastheads do every day, we simply asked questions and as standard practice included a deadline for a response.
‘I had made no decision about whether or what to publish, and The Herald’s decision about what to do would have been informed by any response Wilson supplied.
‘Wilson made the decision to publicly disclose her new partner – who had been a feature of her social media accounts for months.’
Hornery also responded to the criticism, writing: ‘I have learnt some new and difficult lessons from this and want to be upfront with you about the things I got wrong.
‘I genuinely regret that Rebel has found this hard. That was never my intention. But I see she has handled it all with extraordinary grace. As a gay man I’m well aware of how deeply discrimination hurts. The last thing I would ever want to do is inflict that pain on someone else.’