Australian mining magnate Gina Rinehart has launched action in the NSW Supreme Court in an attempt to obtain a copy of the second part of the Nine Network drama House Of Hancock to scan for possible defamatory material.
According to Fairfax, Mrs Rinehart’s lawyers asked the court for permission to view the program to investigate if there were grounds to seek an urgent injunction preventing the series, which portrays her fraught relationship with her late father, from going to air as scheduled on Sunday night.
The first part of House Of Hancock aired last Sunday and drew in more than 2 million viewers. It dramatised Ms Rinehart’s childhood and the struggles in the relationship between her and her late father Lang Hancock and his wife Rose, a former housemaid. The second instalment is said to focus on Hancock’s death and the legal battle between Rinehart and Rose Hancock over his estate.
According to the ABC, Rinehart’s lawyer Tom Blackburn has told the court that when interviewed on Channel Nine’s “A Current Affair”, one of the House Of Hancock series producers openly admitted some of the show was made up and compared it to “Dynasty”.
After the first episode aired, Mrs Rinehart’s company Hancock Prospecting released a statement accusing Channel Nine for going “out of its way to cause undue damage and upset to those currently living and the memory of those no longer with us.”
“Despite repeatedly bringing it to Nine CEO David Gyngell’s attention, many scenes broadcast last night were fictitious, unfounded or grossly distorted, and some simply never occurred,” continued the statement.
The hearing continues and a decision is yet to be made.
Watch: ‘House of Hancock’ Promo