Scarlett Johansson Sues French Author For Satirizing Her In A Novel

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scarembedPhoto: REX USA/PDN/VILLARD.
Scarlett Johansson must take herself very seriously. How else could one explain the fact that she sued author Gregoire Delacourt for using elements of her biography in a novel that satirizes celebrity culture? Or, is she simply making life imitate art?

It doesn't matter for Delacourt, who was ordered to pay Johansson legal damages by a French court this week. Her lawyers argued that Delacourt's novel La Première Chose qu'On Regarde (The First Thing We Look At) amounted to a "breach and fraudulent use of personal rights" because it centered on a promiscuous character based on the actress.

The character, Jeanine Foucamprez, physically resembles Johansson in the novel, and the main character, a mechanic, at first believes her to be the famous actress. Johansson called the depiction "hurtful and demeaning" in her suit.

Delacourt, however, intended the character to be a tribute. "It was meant as the highest praise. She is an archetypal beauty of our times, very human with a touching fragility," he told the BBC. "She is a wonderful, iconic actress. I was hoping that she might send me flowers because this book is, in a way, a declaration of love."

Clearly, Johansson doesn't see it that way. The Paris court ordered the author to pay her 2,500 euros (about $3,400), but her victory is more indicative of the preciousness of a celebrity's image than anything else. (BBC)