Photographer tells inquiry of 'set up shoots'19/07/2012 - 15:48:37
A photographer has told an inquiry into press behaviour that most pictures taken of celebrities are “set up shoots”.
Matthew Sprake, who runs a picture agency, told the Leveson Inquiry that celebrities – or their agents – “passed information” to photographers about where they would be and when.
He says, in a written statement to the inquiry, that sometimes celebrities want payment for the information.
“Information about where a celebrity is going to be on a certain day and time has been passed to us by the celebrity themselves or their agents,” said Mr Sprake, managing director of NewsPics, in the statement.
“Sometimes they want payment for this information by way of a split of the fees paid on publication.”
Mr Sprake gave evidence to the inquiry on Wednesday and was asked how “widespread” was the “practice of celebrities selling information to photographers about themselves” or allowing themselves to be photographed with a “view to commercial exploitation.
He said the practice was “massive” and added: “Most of the pictures that are taken of celebrities are done that way. I mean set-up shoots – they’re commonplace within the industry. They happen daily.”
The inquiry, which is not sitting today, is scheduled to resume on Monday.
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