Rebekah Vardy ‘signs for tell-all Wagatha Christie documentary with Discovery+ to pay £1.5m legal bills’ after rival Coleen Rooney inks a deal with Disney+
Rebekah Vardy has signed a deal to take part in tell-all documentary about her libel battle with Coleen Rooney to pay her legal bills, it is being reported.
The 40-year-old has found her reputation in tatters after she was accused by Coleen of leaking ‘false stories’ to the media, with a judge ruling against her in the High Court.
Since then Coleen has signed a multimillion-pound deal with Disney+ for the chance to detail her version of events that led to one of the highest profile libel cases in British legal history.
Now Rebekah seems to have followed suit after signing a deal with Discovery+ for a documentary that will be released in the coming months.
The Sun quotes a source as saying: ‘Becky has been inundated with offers ever since the trial ended.
‘She has made no secret she believes she has been hard done by and is keen for her voice to be heard.
‘Right now she is facing the prospect of a hefty legal bill and sees this documentary as a way to recoup some of the costs.
‘Obviously her fee won’t be anything like the cost of her lawyers but it will help.’
It is believed the WAG is facing legal bills of up to £1.5million, double the amount originally estimated following the outcome of the case.
Rebekah Vardy, pictured outside the High Court during the libel battle in May, has signed a documentary deal with Discovery+, it is being reported
It comes after Coleen Rooney, pictured outside the High Court during the case in May, signed a documentary deal with Disney+
Rebekah Vardy will not appeal the High Court ruling which saw her lose the £3million Wagatha Christie libel battle against Coleen Rooney
The WAG – who is married to Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy , 35 – sued Coleen , 36, for libel after she accused Rebekah of leaking ‘false stories’ to the media, with a judge ruling against Rebekah at the High Court
Mrs Vardy and her footballer husband have been left with a £3million legal bill after Mrs Justice Steyn ruled in favour of Mrs Rooney
In a damning judgement Mrs Justice Steyn of the High Court ruled that Rebekah and her agent Caroline Watt had leaked stories about Coleen.
Rebekah sued her former friend for libel over a now-famous social media post in which Coleen described setting up a ‘sting operation’ by posting fake stories to selected followers on her private Instagram account to uncover who was leaking stories about her to The Sun.
The ‘big reveal’ post in October 2019 ended: ‘It’s… Rebekah Vardy’s account.’
After Rebekah brought legal action, Coleen offered her a ‘drop hands’ offer, which meant they would both walk away, paying their own costs. She also suggested they make a charity donation.
But Rebekah declined, leading to a costly High Court trial. After her victory, Coleen wants her rival to pay up, with reports estimating the final amount could be £3million.
There is speculation that Rebekah and her husband, Leicester City striker Jamie, may have to sell their Portuguese villa to pay the legal bill, while the documentary deal could go some way to offsetting the amount they owe.
Last month it was reported that Rebekah had been weighing up offers as she set out plans to ‘document the emotional turmoil’ she went through during legal proceedings she instigated.
A source told the Mirror: ‘The show will document her emotional turmoil both before, during and after her court case, which is ongoing to this day.’
The insider confirmed that the documentary wouldn’t feature any trial footage, adding: ‘Becky always refused to allow cameras to follow her during the libel case, unlike Coleen.’
Coleen, who is the wife of England’s all-time top goalscorer Wayne Rooney, is set to earn more than her husband after securing a deal with Disney+ following a bidding war with other streaming giants.
Describing the project they said in their announcement: ‘The three-part series will take viewers from the circumstances that led to her infamous Instagram post that ‘broke the Internet’ all the way to Coleen being a successful defendant in one of the UK’s highest-profile High Court defamation cases brought against her by Rebekah Vardy.
‘In a story for our times, Wagatha Christie will reveal how fiercely determined and resilient Coleen had to be in order to protect her family from the challenges presented by the traditional and social media landscapes.’
The series will take viewers back to the first social media post that initiated the story, all the way through to the High Court case, and will feature interviews with family, friends and key players involved in the trial.
It will also look at how Coleen has been in the public spotlight for two decades, having begun dating footballer husband Wayne when they were teenagers.
Sean Doyle, Disney+ director of unscripted content, said: ‘Well what a story, first and and foremost. Everything we do has to be an amazing story that has amazing twists and turns in it.
Rebekah Vardy’s reputation lies in tatters after she sensationally lost the ‘Wagatha Christie’ libel case with Coleen Rooney, who said the case was a waste of money and Vardy should never have taken it to court
Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy together in 2016. The WAGs have ended up in court in the libel trial of the year and Mrs Vardy’s reputation is in tatters after bringing the case and losing
Wayne – who manages MLS team DC United in Washington – earns a reported £800,000 a year in the role.
A source told The Sun: ‘This is a massive deal for Coleen — in every sense. For the first time in 20 年, she will be the main breadwinner.
‘She is also getting across her own side of the story in terms of Wagatha Christie. Since her first damning social media post outing Rebekah, she has remained steadfastly silent.
‘Now the public will see first hand the toll this whole case took on her, and her family – and why she took the action she took.’
Earlier this month it was revealed Rebekah won’t appeal Mrs Justice Steyn’s ruling, which said swathes of her evidence given under oath had been ‘manifestly inconsistent’, ‘not credible’ and needed to be treated with ‘very considerable caution’.
A source told The Sun: ‘It’s all over and Becky wants to move on. She is extremely frustrated with lawyers and the legal process so hell would freeze over before she wanted to go back into court.
‘At the moment she is enjoying being a mother, and a wife. She was pregnant with her youngest child when this whole thing blew up and she is two now.
‘So Becky is enjoying spending time with her and her other children — and does not want another legal fight to get in the way.’
After the ruling Rebekah released a statement saying she was ‘extremely sad and disappointed’ at the judge’s decision.
She said: ‘It is not the result that I had expected, nor believe was just. I brought this action to vindicate my reputation and am devastated by the judge’s finding.
‘The judge accepted that publication of Coleen’s post was not in the “public interest” and she also rejected her claim that I was the “Secret Wag”. But as for the rest of her judgement, she got it wrong and this is something I cannot accept.’
She added: ‘The case is over. I want to thank everyone who has supported me.’
Coleen said in a statement that she was ‘pleased’ the ruling went in her favour but that she ‘never believed’ the case should have gone to court ‘at such expense in times of hardship for so many people when the money could have been far better spent helping others’.
Rebekah Vardy sketched in the High Court where she was accused of lying and giving ‘implausible’ evidence. She left court for an hour without explanation, returning with some Lucozade, her laptop and her lawyer
Rebekah Vardy has said she was wrong to trust her friend and agent Caroline Watt (left), who has been too ill to attend the trial, accusing her of leaking stories about Coleen. The judgment has said they were both involved
She said: ‘It was not a case I ever sought or wanted. I never believed it should have gone to court at such expense in times of hardship for so many people when the money could have been far better spent helping others.
‘Both before and after my social media posts in October 2019, I made every effort to avoid the need for such a drawn out and public court case. All my attempts to do so were knocked back by Mrs (Rebekah) Vardy.
‘This left me with no alternative but to go through with the case to defend myself and to end the repeated leaking of my private information to The Sun.
‘These leaks from my private Instagram account began in 2017. They continued for almost two years, intruding on my privacy and that of my family. Although I bear Mrs Vardy no ill-will, today’s judgment makes clear that I was right in what I said in my posts of October 2019.
‘Finally, I would like to thank all of my legal team, 私の家族, friends and everyone who supported me, including the public, through this difficult and stressful time.’
The wife of the Leicester City striker relentlessly pursued the case against her Wag rival Coleen for nearly three years after being accused of leaking private stories about Coleen and her family to The Sun newspaper.
The bombshell verdict from Court 13 of the High Court was handed down remotely online by Mrs Justice Steyn just over two months after the hearing in May. Vardy’s failed libel suit has been branded the most ill-advised in history.
Mrs Vardy had insisted on a full trial in the glare of the international media – and lost.
The High Court found that Mrs Rooney’s social media post accusing her rival was ‘substantially true’ and that Mrs Vardy ‘knew of, condoned and was actively engaged’ in leaks to the media by her ex-agent Caroline Watt.
The post that accused Rebekah Vardy’s social media account of leaking stories. It sparked a £3million legal battle that Mrs Rooney won after the judge agreed it was ‘substantially true’ and therefore not libellous
And in a damning assessment of Mrs Vardy’s evidence, the judge said ‘significant parts were not credible’ and at times her ‘evidence was manifestly inconsistent with the contemporaneous documentary evidence, evasive or implausible’.
By contrast, the judge found that Coleen and her witnesses, including husband Wayne, ‘gave honest, reliable evidence.’
Mrs Justice Steyn also ruled that loss of WhatsApp messages between Mrs Vardy and Ms Watt was ‘deliberate rather than accidental’ – dismissing her agent’s claim that a phone fell into the North Sea when a ship hit a big wave.
In her ruling, the judge said it was ‘likely’ that Mrs Vardy’s agent at the time, Caroline Watt, ‘undertook the direct act’ of passing the information to The Sun.
But she added: ‘Nonetheless, the evidence… clearly shows, in my view, that Mrs Vardy knew of and condoned this behaviour, actively engaging in it by directing Ms Watt to the private Instagram account, sending her screenshots of Mrs Rooney’s posts, drawing attention to items of potential interest to the press, and answering additional queries raised by the press via Ms Watt.
The judge added: ‘In my judgment, the conclusions that I have reached as to the extent to which the claimant engaged in disclosing to The Sun information to which she only had access as a permitted follower of an Instagram account which she knew, and Mrs Rooney repeatedly asserted, was private, suffice to show the single meaning is substantially true.’
For a week in May, the case captivated millions who were left open-mouthed by the evidence including explosive and expletive-filled Whatsapp messages sent by Ms Vardy as well as Coleen’s evidence about leaking false stories about her private life to find who was giving them to the tabloids and how her marriage almost fell apart after her husband Wayne was caught drink-driving with a party girl.