J.K. Rowling appears before Leveson Inquiry
LONDON — Actress Sienna Miller was left feeling paranoid and scared by years of relentless pursuit by the British tabloid press, she told an inquiry into press ethics Thursday.
Giving evidence at the inquiry headed by Judge Leveson, sparked by the phone-hacking and police corruption scandal at the News of the World, Miller said the abuse of her privacy included paparazzi waiting outside her house as well as having messages on her mobile phone intercepted.
Miller told the hearing she thought the stories about her in the U.K. tabloids were fed to the papers by her friends and family. But it turned out her phone had hacked by the News of the World, owned by Rupert Murdoch until it was suddenly closed in July.
She said harassment by the tabloids left her feeling “very violated and very paranoid and anxious, constantly.”
“I felt like I was living in some sort of video game,” added Miller, a source of constant tabloid attention by dint of her relationship with Jude Law.
“For a number of years I was relentlessly pursued by 10 to 15 men, almost daily,” she said. “Spat at, verbally abused.
“I would often find myself, at the age of 21, at midnight, running down a dark street on my own with 10 men chasing me. And the fact they had cameras in their hands made that legal.”
“Harry Potter” scribe J.K. Rowling also gave evidence to the inquiry Thursday. She said she felt “under siege” from intrusive journalists. “It feels threatening to have people watching you,” she said.
Witnesses in past days have included actors Steve Coogan and Hugh Grant.
CNN celebrity interviewer Piers Morgan is one of the witnesses yet to come before the inquiry.