Let's face it; wedding photos are rubbish. Most right-thinking guests know that wedding photo time is the time they stand around in the cold making chit-chat to people they barely know while the bride and groom get a jillion identical pictures taken.
But sometimes wedding photos take on more importance than normal. Usually, six years after the wedding, wedding photos are entirely forgotten about – save for the occasional catty comment about how fat the bride's arms looked in her dress – but not if you're Catherine Zeta Jones or her elderly husband Michael Douglas. if you're Catherine Zeta Jones or Michael Douglas your wedding photos are more guarded and precious than the secret of life itself – unless a magazine has paid you £1 million for them – and you'll go to the highest court in the land to make sure that absolutely nobody – except for the magazine and all of its readers – sees them.
Yeah, the court case between OK! and Hello! about Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas has reached the House of Lords. We suppose we could have just said that to begin with.
It's probably fair to say that Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas don't mind rolling their sleeves up and getting all litigious when the time calls for it. Which is probably now, since Michael Douglas hasn't made a decent film for 13 years and Catherine Zeta Jones hasn't made a decent film. Earlier this year Michael Douglas sued some media companies because they were making money from his face without telling him, and we also get the feeling he'd have sued his own child for pissing up Daddy's back one day at the beach if he knew he'd get more than the contents of a piggy bank and a tub of sea monkeys from it.
But this is all small fry. And in between bouts of mercilessly slagging off Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in print, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones have been constantly getting their knickers in a twist about their wedding pictures from six years ago. When Catherine Zeta Jones married Michael Douglas in 2000 it was a small affair – without the helicopter-renting shenanigans of Nicole and Keith's wedding or the freakish three-minute kisses of Tom and Katie's wedding – but OK! magazine still decided to pay Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas £1 million for exclusive wedding picture rights, such was the public's desire to look at them and go "urgh, but he looks so old!" All was going well until Hello! magazine printed some paparazzi-snapped spoiler pictures before OK! could tear its eyes off Michael Douglas' gizzardy neck long enough to publish them, and a long court case ensued.
First off Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta Jones and OK! took Hello! to court over the wedding pictures and won, then earlier this year an appeals court told OK! to pay back almost £2 million in damages and costs to Hello! plus £600,000 towards legal bills. And, now that Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas are out of the picture, OK! is fighting back by taking the case to the country's highest court; the House of Lords, where a bunch of confused old men with hereditary titles sit around scratching their heads because they didn't know photographs had been invented yet. Reuters reports:
The House of Lords must decide whether celebrity magazines can sue if an exclusive deal is spoiled, and whether exclusivity extends beyond the publication of the pictures. The ruling will shed further light on how privacy laws are changing following the introduction of human rights legislation six years ago. "The contract threw a ring of confidentiality around the entire wedding that the Douglases themselves were not entitled to break," said Richard Millett, barrister for OK!'s publisher Northern & Shell Plc. "Without it the value of the exclusivity for which they paid would have been seriously undermined or eliminated."
See? Now that this case has got to the House of Lords, it doesn't just affect Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas any more. It doesn't just affect OK! and Hello! and all the other pissawful women's magazines with annoying exclamation marks after their pointless one-word titles. It affects you. It affects your… um… wait. It affects your… no, we got it wrong. It doesn't affect you at all. You can carry on with your day now. Sorry.