Craig McLachlan to sit out Rocky Horror Show after indecent assault claims

Joann Johnston
January 8, 2018

Craig McLachlan has stepped down from his role in the stage musical Rocky Horror Show in the wake of allegations that he sexually assaulted and bullied female cast members.

Production firm the Gordon Frost Organisation (GFO) said it was "shocked to learn of allegations against Craig McLachlan while he was involved in the Rocky Horror Show in 2014".

Christie Whelan Browne alleges that, during a performance of the 2014 show, McLachlan pulled aside her underwear and kissed her buttocks.

The former Neighbours and Home and Away star is accused of exposing himself to one cast member, kissing another without consent, and pulling down a cast member's underpants during a performance and kissing her bottom.

McLachlan said the allegations by Erika Heynatz, Christie Whelan Browne and Angela Scundi are "baseless".

Erica Heynatz, another actress, claims that McLachlan made unwanted physical advances toward her in the green room of Melbourne's Comedy Theatre. But he would always kiss down my breasts and continue to kiss all the way down until I would have to sort of move and wriggle away.

However they have confirmed that their "records show the claimants at no time made any complaint - formal or informal - to the company manager or executive producer of The Rocky Horror Show in 2014".

McLachlan denies her claims, describing the show was "a confrontational musical oozing with sexuality" and that as a result "actors have to perform certain actions".

'I said: "Don't you kiss me".

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He began by saying , "I am here tonight because I had a privilege of working with a group of extraordinarily talented women".

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Three Australian actresses accused McLachlan of sexual misconduct via a joint Fairfax and ABC exposé.

McLachlan said he has no recollection of such an event.

"As the investigation is ongoing it would be inappropriate to make any further comments".

"The ABC takes any allegation of harassment very seriously and does not condone or tolerate any inappropriate behaviour", a spokesman said.

The Gordon Frost Organisation released a statement this afternoon saying they will be conducting a full internal investigation and will cooperate with authorities.

"It would be distressing to us if anyone within our company was dismissive of sexual assault allegations, and this will form a part of our internal investigation".

December Media - which produces The Dr Blake Mysteries - also issued a statement saying that the series would be put on hold. Craig has been central to this success both in front of camera and on set.

Ford also said in a subsequent tweet that legal representatives are determining if McLachlan will be entitled to a payout. "It is not appropriate for December to respond to the allegations about Craig McLachlan's behavior in relation to another production he has appeared in".

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