Last week a decision was made by the High Court of London on the libel case between women footballers Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy, the wives of Wayne Rooney and Jamie Vardy respectively. The case is better known in the media as the Wagatha Christie libel lawsuit. The process was closely followed by many and now there are several parties that are interested in bringing the story of the women’s football to the screen.
Vardy sued Rooney for libel after she revealed Rooney as the person who leaked a series of stories about her and her family to the press. Both women are prominent figures in the UK and there has been a rivalry between the two for years. Meanwhile, a battle has broken out between different production companies to capture the events on screen. It was announced today that at least one deal is close to being closed: Poldark screenwriter Debbie Horsfield will write the plot about the situation, adapted for image, for Blueprint Productions. Blueprint Productions has an eye for scandal stories and is known for, among other things, A Very British Scandal (2022–2021).
Meanwhile, Rooney also sees an opportunity to tell her side of events to the public. She does this on the basis of a documentary about herself and her family. It is not the first time that we will follow the Rooney family closely, they previously collaborated on Rooney (2022), a documentary now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
In addition to Blueprint Productions and Rooney itself, Netflix has also shown interest in the case. During the trial, the production company Dorothy St Pictures was filming. Netflix would like to use these images for a documentary. There is little information about the documentary yet, but there is speculation that Netflix and Rooney may join forces and make a documentary together.
Then there’s Chalkboard Television Productions, which was commissioned by Channel 4, a British public television network, to film a reconstruction of the events using courtroom transcripts.
All in all, the closing of the Wagatha Christie case seems to have opened up a whole new playing field in the media.