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Rebel Wilson Won’t Get Her Multimillion Dollar Payout Back, But Says It Was “Never About The Money”

 

Australia’shighestcourthas knockedbackactorRebelWilson’sappeal in her defamationcaseagainstamagazinepublisher, bringingthelong-running legal stoushtoanend.

ThePitchPerfectstarwas fighting to retrieve millions of dollars in damages she was awarded but thenlostonappealaftera juryfoundlastyear she had been defamed by Bauer Media, the publisherofWoman’sDay, AustralianWomen’s Weekly, andassociatedwebsites.

The juryfoundWilsonwas defamed in articlesthat said she hadlied about her name, age and background, and thatpainted her asa “serial liar”. A Supreme Court judge awarded her $4.5 millionin damages, Australia’s largest-ever defamationpayout.

But theamount was reduced by 85% to $600,000when the VictorianCourt of Appeal ruled Wilson hadn’t provedshe had missed out on leading movieroles as a result of the defamatory articles.

At the time, Wilson labelled thedecision “bizarre” and vowed to fight it in the High Court.

On Friday morning the HighCourt knocked back Wilson’sapplication for special leave to appeal, which means it decided it wouldn’t hearthe case.

Her lawyers, Matthew CollinsQC and Renee Embom, hadargued in the application that the Court ofAppeal had “strayed from its role” in overturning findings of fact made by thefirst judge, and taken an “unfair” approach that resulted in severalerrors.

Bauer Mediaopposed theapplication.

Outside court Wilson saidshe was not too fussed about thefailed High Court bid.

“Today was just about asmall point of specialdamages andto me it was never about the money, it wasabout standing up to a bully,” she said. “And I’vedone that so successfully. At theend of the day that’s what matters.”

Shesaid shewas proud ofherself for seeing thecaseout “right to thebitterend”, and thatshe “never dreamed” shewould one daywind up at the HighCourt.

Wilsonalso reiterated that despiteBauer’s appealvictory ondamages, the jury verdict that shehad been defamedbythe publisherstillstands.

“This was acompany thatbehaved very, very badly, wereproven guiltyof malicious defamation, but at theend of theday the jury obviouslyrestored myreputation.”

BauerMediageneral counsel Adrian Goss said in a statementhe was pleased the High Court had putan end to thelawsuit.

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