Hello! magazine has issued an apology to notable actor and humanitarian George Clooney, who is also married to human rights lawyer Amal Clooney. The magazine reportedly entirely fabricated an interview with Clooney and made references while sharing fake quotes by the star speaking on his wife, Amal.
Clooney was obviously surprised by the move that Hello! made to acquire a story which they claim was “exclusive” with the actor. The London magazine has since apologized to the star for publishing an interview that the actor says was “completely fabricated.”
Hello Magazine apologizes for running fabricated George Clooney interview https://t.co/WZRtX9zzhn
— Variety (@Variety) April 1, 2016
The quotes published by Hello! that inaccurately dished on George and his relationship with Amal, were picked up by various international publications and shared around the world. Those publications that lifted the quotes and referenced the “interview” that Hello! shared were, as Clooney notes, also typically reliable sources, including Vanity Fair, Marie Claire, and The Evening Standard, which would therefore make the untrue interview even more believable.
Clooney spoke on the matter, voicing his frustration and concern for the possible “trend” of fabricated interviews by what readers typically think of as reliable sources. The Associated Press shares Clooney’s statement on the subject.
“I have not given an interview to Hello! magazine and the quotes attributed to me are not accurate. In my experience, being misquoted is not unusual but to have an ‘exclusive interview’ completely fabricated is something new. And a very disturbing trend.”
Along with an apology, Hello! shares the source it had for the story that was clearly not an “exclusive interview” as advertised by the publication.
“Hello! said it had bought the interview in good faith from an agency, Famous. In a statement Friday, it apologized ‘unreservedly to Mr. Clooney and his wife Amal for any distress that publication of this piece may have caused them.'”
As The Guardian relays, the article is no longer view-able on the website of the magazine; however, evidence of the false interview still remains when searched. The headline attached to the fabricated story includes “George reveals wife Amal Clooney’s most attractive feature,” and suggests that George is most “impressed” by Amal’s intelligence over her sense of style. The piece also included the words “in an exclusive interview with HELLO!” which is the most disturbing part of the case.
— Sandeep Shenoy (@hitech_guru) March 31, 2016
The Guardian notes what is now seen by readers when happening across the page that once housed the fake story.
“A redirect from the article now takes the reader to Hello!’s homepage, which for some time lead with an April Fools Day special about Clooney’s top pranks, and now leads with statement in which the magazine expresses its ‘dismay’ at Clooney’s denial and passes the blame to a third party, Famous, from whom it purchased the piece.”
It is surprising that the publication is not taking full responsibility for the perpetuation of a false story, especially when they were the source that indicated it was an interview exclusive to them. If it had been purchased, fake or real, the interview can not be titled “exclusive” and that, as Clooney commented, is a disturbing fact.
The publication relays Hello! magazine’s exact wording in their address to the fabricated interview issue.
“HELLO! Magazine and the HELLO! Group are very dismayed by Mr George Clooney’s statement that an interview with him that was published by the HELLO! Group is not authentic. The HELLO! Group bought the interview in good faith from a respectable independent agent, Famous, with whom it has dealt for many years and the agency and its writer were both credited at the end of the article in HELLO! Magazine as is customary. Purchase was on the unquestionable understanding that the interview and material were correct and accurate in all respects. “
[Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images]