Actress Rebel Wilson has been awarded $3.6 million, or $4.5 million Australian dollars, in a defamation lawsuit victory over Bauer Media.
The Australian native had sued the publishing conglomerate over false claims made in Woman’s Day magazine that accused the Pitch Perfect star of lying about her name, age, and upbringing.
CNN reports that Wilson filed the lawsuit after a series of Woman’s Day articles alleged that the comedic actress was “a serial liar” who “fabricated almost every aspect of her life.”
In the lawsuit, Wilson claimed the allegations that she misrepresented essential details about her biography damaged her reputation and cost her potentially lucrative film work.
Justice John Dixon sided with Wilson’s team, concluding that Bauer Media did not convincingly substantiate the allegations and appearing to agree with her claims that the damaging articles cost her future earnings.
Dixon awarded Wilson $522,000 in general damages, and $3.1 million in damages for lost opportunities for new film work as a result of the unfounded allegations.
Wilson’s lawyers told CNN that it is the largest defamation payout in Australian history.
The judge defended the hefty award as necessary to get the message across to the public that the article did not substantiate its claims.
“Unless substantial damages are awarded there is a real risk that the public will not be convinced of the seriousness of the defamation, but will rather wrongly conclude that the articles were trivial or not that serious,” Dixon reportedly told the court.
Feature photo: Associated Press