Magazine ordered to pay Zeta-Jones' court costs
LONDON A High Court judge ruled Friday that a celebrity magazine that published unauthorized wedding photos of Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones must pay the bulk of the couple's legal costs.
Judge John Lindsay ruled in April that Hello magazine's use of unauthorized pictures taken secretly at the November 2000 wedding was a breach of commercial confidentiality.
In November, he awarded 14,000 pounds (about $33,000 Cdn) in damages to the couple and just more than one million pounds ($2.4 million) to OK, a rival magazine that had paid one million pounds ($2.4 million) for exclusive rights to pictures of the wedding.
On Friday, Lindsay said Hello must also pay 75 per cent of the costs of the first hearing and 85 per cent of the costs of the damages hearing. The claimants estimated total costs at about four million pounds ($9.6 million Cdn).
Both sides have been granted permission to appeal aspects of the judgment.
Hello lawyer Christopher Hutchings said the magazine would try to overturn the ruling that it violated the couple's commercial confidence. Zeta-Jones and Douglas won the right to appeal Lindsay's ruling that publication of the photos did not infringe their privacy.
Hello ran pictures smuggled out of the lavish wedding at New York's Plaza Hotel, attended by stars including Sean Connery, Sharon Stone, Jack Nicholson, Steven Spielberg and Anthony Hopkins.
Zeta-Jones testified during the six-week case last year that she felt "violated" by the magazine's "sleazy and unflattering" pictures. She singled out an image that showed her new husband feeding her wedding cake, saying "I don't usually like my husband shoving a spoon down my throat to be photographed.
"The quality was what every bride would hate to have out there."