“Ooookay. Man. This is getting a little silly now. No, Will Poulter and I are not dating. We went to the beach with our friends, who are always about half a metre [sic] away from us in every picture, but have been cleverly cut out/framed out so that it looks otherwise,” Pugh, 26, wrote via her Instagram Story on Tuesday, May 24. “You can LITERALLY see my best friend in the corner of so many shots and Archie [Madekwe]‘s arms at the sides.”
The actress noted that speculation about her friendship with Poulter, 29, does “more damage than good,” adding, “Thanks for saying we look sexy .. doesn’t mean we’re doing the sexy.”
In a separate post, the U.K. native explained that there was “no need to drag people” through the rumors. “Regardless of your opinion on who I should or shouldn’t be with, at the end of the day if you’re complimenting someone by trolling another person .. you’re just bullying,” Pugh, who has been dating Zach Braff since 2019, continued. “There’s literally no need to be horrible online — no need. Think about what you write. Think about who it affects.”
Pugh’s social media statement comes after she made headlines during a beach outing with her Midsommar costar and a group of friends. The Black Widow star was photographed having fun in the Mediterranean Sea over the weekend, according to photos obtained by the Daily Mail on Monday, May 23.
During the outing, the Marvel actress was spotted rubbing sunscreen onto Poulter’s back, sipping on cocktails and taking a dip in the water. At the time, Pugh took to social media to offer a glimpse at the weekend celebration in honor of her pal Harris Reed‘s birthday.
“*blissful siighhhh* Wonderful people. Beautiful time,” Pugh wrote via Instagram on Monday. “Feeling a bit overwhelmed by the amount of incredible people I was able to hug. Thank you sunshine. Thank you Ibiza. #imadesomanynewfriends!! 💛☀️🍯🍸.”
The Little Women actress has previously used social media to address comments about her personal life. In April 2020, Pugh called out her followers for sending an overwhelming amount of hate in response to her birthday tribute to Braff, 47, and their age difference.
“I’ve been wrestling with the idea for the past few days about whether I should do this video and then finally last night I thought, for my own peace of mind, I should,” she said in the lengthy Instagram video, before reminding her followers that “being hateful is not trendy.”
“I’m 24 years old. I have been working since I was 17 years old. I have been earning money since I was 17 years old. I became an adult when I was 18 years old and I started paying taxes when I was 18 years old,” she continued. “I do not need you to tell me who I should and should not love, and I would never in my life ever, ever tell someone who they can and cannot love. It is not your place. And really it has nothing to do with you … The abuse that you throw at him is abuse that you throw at me.”
The Scrubs alum, for his part, later gushed about his girlfriend defending their romance. “She literally sat down, hit record on her phone and said that,” he recalled during an interview with MR PORTER’s digital magazine, The Journal in November 2020. “I thought: how could I possibly follow anything as intelligent and articulate as that? So, I chose not to.”
Earlier this year, the director honored Pugh on her birthday, writing via Instagram in January, “I am so lucky to know you. And the world is so lucky they get to witness your incredible talent.”