Pitch Perfect star Rebel Wilson ordered to repay £2.4m she won from Bauer

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Pitch Perfect star Rebel Wilson has been told she must pay back the millions of dollars she was awarded in a defamation court case last year.

The actress had her record AUS$4.6m (£2.7m) payment slashed to $600,000 (£338,000) on appeal two weeks ago after a judge ruled it was too much.

The same judge at the Victorian Court of Appeal in Melbourne has now said she will now have to repay AUS$4.2m (£2.4m) with interest.

The Hollywood star won her case against Bauer Media last year over articles from 2015 claiming she had lied about her age and background to further her career.

She had claimed a series of articles in Bauer-owned Woman’s Day, Australian Women’s Weekly and OK Magazine had portrayed her as a serial liar and damaged her reputation.

The Sydney-born actress told the trial she was sacked from DreamWorks animated feature films “Trolls” and “Kung Fu Panda 3” following the stories.

Rebel Wilson accused Bauer Media of a "malicious, deliberate take-down" in relation to eight stories
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Wilson won £2.7m after successfully suing Bauer Media in 2015

Earlier this month, she tweeted: “Everybody knows I lost money after those maliciously defamatory articles were printed about me by @BauerMedia in 2015. The learned trial judge and Australian jury on the case who heard all the evidence clearly agreed.”

“But somehow the Court of Appeal have been absolutely flippant with regards to my economic loss, not to mention my overall hurt and distress at having to stand up to these bullies,” she wrote.

The Court of Appeal said there was no basis for her to receive financial damages for the potential loss of roles and found the previous judge had relied on evidence from Wilson and two Hollywood agents to conclude that she had lost work.

Following the payout last year, Bauer appealed against what was the largest defamation payout in Australian legal history, claiming the figure set a dangerous precedent.

The judge in the Victorian Court of Appeal agreed and slashed the payment.

Wilson said after the initial judgement last year that she planned to give any payout to charity and the Australian film industry. It is not clear whether she did so.

Lamenting the decision earlier this month, she said: “Less going to less fortunate Australians and leaves a billionaire corporation, proven guilty of malicious defamation, being able to get away with their seriously harmful acts for a very low pay day.”

“Clearly not fair. Come on Australia.”

In the latest hearing this week, Wilson did not dispute that the £2.4m needed to be returned, but failed to convince judges she should pay less interest.





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