Australian actor Rebel Wilson has been awarded $4.56m AUD (£2.76m) in damages after winning her country’s largest libel case – but she won’t be keeping any of the money.
The Pitch Perfect star won her defamation case against Bauer Media in June, and having now learnt the details of her compensation has confirmed that she will be donating the payout to charity, writing on Twitter “I’m looking forward to helping out some great Australian charities and supporting the Oz film industry with the damages I’ve received”.
A jury of six was asked to consider 40 questions and eight claims of defamation relating to allegations by the publisher of Woman’s Day and Australian Women’s Weekly that Wilson had lied about her age, real name and childhood. The jury unanimously agreed that the actor had been incorrectly portrayed as a serial liar.
The $4.56m is four times the largest defamation payout in Australian history, with Wilson awarded $650,000 in general damages and a further $3,917,472 for opportunities of screen roles lost because of the articles.
But in a series of tweets, the Pitch Perfect actor said the “long and hard court battle […] wasn’t about the money”.
Today was the end of a long and hard court battle against Bauer Media who viciously tried to take me down with a series of false articles.
Wilson sat in court for every day of the three-week trial and spent six days in the witness box. However, she was unable to attend the supreme court in Melbourne for the judgement, as she is currently on a visit to London.