Noel Clarke

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Noel Clarke

UK actor and filmmaker Noel Clarke is reported to be suing UK newspaper The Guardian for £10m damages over articles about his alleged behaviour towards some 20 women.

Clarke, whose credits include Brotherhood, Adulthood and Bulletproof, was accused of groping and sexual misconduct between 2004 and 2019 by 20 women who had worked with him. He has denied all the allegations.

As well as claiming for general damages which cover harm to reputation, Clarke is seeking special damages which cover specific financial losses, according to documents lodged at London’s High Court and seen by BBC News as part of Clarke’s defamation case against The Guardian. 

The claim states that “every existing or upcoming contract” of his had been cancelled, and he had “not had one single work contract” since the first Guardian article about him was published in April 2021.

He is also claiming aggravated damages, for what his lawyers describe as the “relentless, targeted, vicious and persistent nature of the wholly unjustified defamatory campaign” launched against him by The Guardian.

A court hearing was scheduled to take place this week, on July 20, but the court has been told that Clarke wishes to instruct new solicitors. The hearing has been rescheduled to take place in October or early November 2023.

The Metropolitan Police said in March 2022 there was not enough evidence against Clarke to warrant a criminal investigation.

Clarke had initially also proposed legal action against Bafta, which suspended both the award Clarke had recently been presented with for outstanding contribution to British cinema at the 2021 film awards and Clarke’s membership, and GQ magazine owner Condé Nast which ran an interview with the two journalists who broke the story. He dropped the Bafta and Condé Nast cases in October last year

Specific financial losses claimed by Clarke (according to BBC reports):

Sky TV show Bulletproof, series 4

  • His fee for acting in 10 episodes - £585,000
  • His fee for writing two episodes - £90,000
  • His fee for directing two episodes - £90,000
  • Anticipated royalties - £250,000 (estimated figure)

ITV TV show Viewpoint, series 2

  • His fee - £270,000
  • Anticipated royalties - £200,000 (estimated figure)

Channel 5 TV show Highwater (a greenlit show which he says would probably have begun shooting in winter 2021)

  • His producer bonus - in the region of £60,000

BBC TV show Crongton (a greenlit show which he says was likely to be shot around late summer 2022)

  • His producer bonus - in the region of £60,000

StudioCanal movie Something In The Water

  • His producer bonus - in the region of £40,000

Former production company Unstoppable

  • Minimum salary over 10 years - £1.25m (not including any potential raises or bonuses)
  • Projected approximate value of shares, which he says has now been “wiped out”, over next three years - £7m

Legal fees on dealing with Guardian allegations when first published, involving two law firms

  • Approximately £245,000

The total approximate figure, excluding VAT, comes to

  • £10,140,000.60