The Essex-born comedian and actor, 48, pre-emptively and vehemently denied the allegations against him. The claims were first made public this weekend following a joint investigation by The Times, The Sunday Times, and Channel 4’s Dispatches.
One of the women who spoke out against the Rock of Ages actor alleged he raped her at his apartment in Los Angeles on 1 July 2012, which would have been shortly after his relationship with pop star Katy Perry ended in divorce.
The Independent has contacted Perry’s representatives for comment.
Details about the celebrity couple’s turbulent relationship came to light in the weeks and months after separating, with Brand’s behaviour facing scrutiny following the release of the Perry-focused music documentary Part of Me in 2012.
In an interview that year, the pop star made a number of damning claims about her marriage to the former Big Brother host – and their divorce.
Here’s a breakdown of what we know about Brand and Perry’s relationship:
‘Christmas eve jitters’
Perry first met Brand on the set of Get Him to the Greek, the 2010 comedy in which he starred alongside Jonah Hill. The “Roar” singer had been cast in a cameo opposite Brand, who played British rock star Alduous Snow, and their scene involved an on-screen kiss.
Afterwards, Perry recalled “hopping like a bunny” in a 2010 interview with Glamour magazine. “I hop like a bunny when I’m happy – I get a bit childlike. He gives me the Christmas Eve jitters,” she said about their encounter.
The next time Perry and Brand met was during rehearsals for the MTV Video Music Awards in September 2009, when she threw a bottle at him to get his attention.
In the second installment of his memoir, My Booky Wook 2, Brand described how Perry stood “beaming and pleased with herself” after she caught his attention. Flirty banter ensued, before Perry gave him the Alexander McQueen bracelet she was wearing, as a keepsake.
“Then, looking into her eyes, quietly I said: ‘I don’t need anything to remind me of you.’ That is how I fell in love,” the English performer, then 35, wrote. Brand and Perry were later seen kissing at a VMAs after-party hosted by Lady Gaga, as a new Hollywood romance had officially begun.
Three months later, he proposed to Perry on New Year’s Eve during a trip to Jaipur, India.
After a 10-month engagement, the former couple returned to India – this time for a lavish Hindu wedding ceremony near Ranthambore wildlife sanctuary in Rajasthan. “I’m really happily married,” the Forgetting Sarah Marshall actor gushed to Ellen DeGeneres during a subsequent appearance on her chat show.
Fourteen months later, Brand sent Perry a text message “saying he was divorcing me 31 December, 2011,” she told Vogue in 2013.
Footage from Perry’s 2012 documentary captures how the newly-weds were struggling with distance amid the singer’s touring schedule. At one point, Perry admits she’s “fighting to keep my marriage alive” as Brand refuses to visit her on tour. At another, they argue about having children, with Perry – who is 10 years younger than Brand – saying she wasn’t ready to have kids at the time.
In the aftermath of their divorce, which was finalised in February 2012, Brand and Perry separately addressed the reasons for their split.
In an interview with Howard Stern on his Sirius XM show, Brand suggested Perry’s unwillingness to have children ultimately led to the breakdown of their marriage. “She’s young, successful and dedicated,” he said, at the time. “[The reality is] you can’t fully understand it until you do it. I was really into the idea of marriage and having children.”
Meanwhile, Perry appeared to blame their split on Brand being intimidated by her success and pop stardom.
“At first when I met him he wanted an equal, and I think a lot of times strong men do want an equal, but then they get that equal and they’re like, ‘I can’t handle the equalness’,” she said, during her Vogue interview. “He didn’t like the atmosphere of me being the boss on tour. So that was really hurtful, and it was very controlling, which was upsetting.”
Elsewhere, Perry told Billboard she channelled the hurt from their sudden split into her fourth studio album Prism, explaining “I put all the evidence in the music”. She would go on to describe her divorce from Brand as “emotionally traumatic” and the “death of a dream” during subsequent appearances.
As Brand began reorienting his career away from Hollywood to YouTube, where he started his controversial series The Trews: True News with Russell Brand, he also claimed their relationship suffered due to the “undulating nature of fame”.
In light of the sexual assault allegations against Brand, YouTube announced he will no longer be able to earn money from ads on his channel. The company said the suspension was due to Brand “violating” its Creator Responsibility policy.
Perry has been engaged to Orlando Bloom since 2019, with the couple welcoming their daughter Daisy Dove the following year.
In 2020, she reflected on her brief relationship with Brand, comparing it to a “tornado”, adding that she has “always resonated with friction, resistance and challenges”.
Meanwhile, Brand is now married to author Laura Gallacher. The couple share two daughters, with Brand confirming Gallacher is expecting their third child.
Gallacher has not addressed the allegations against Brand.
Rape Crisis offers support for those affected by rape and sexual abuse. You can call them on 0808 802 9999 in England and Wales, 0808 801 0302 in Scotland, and 0800 0246 991 in Northern Ireland, or visit their website at www.rapecrisis.org.uk.If you are in the US, you can call Rainn on 800-656-HOPE (4673)