May 7, 2012 · 0 Comments
WHEN Lara Bingle strode naked to the windows of her beachfront apartment, she might not have known a telephoto lens was capturing every curve – but the starlet has invited the paparazzi into her life.
Model Lara Bingle, pictured on the 23rd of March 2012 at a studio in Redfern
In her drama-filled six years of fame, Lara Bingle has played the game from both sides, accepting paid holidays from paparazzi and posing for pictures purporting to be “pap” shots taken without her knowledge, all the while complaining about invasion of her privacy.
Now she is embroiled in an ugly personal dispute with former friend and paparazzo Darryn Lyons, whose agency Big spent the week attempting to sell nude pictures of Bingle. They were taken from Bondi’s promenade, several hundred metres from the apartment Bingle is occupying rent-free for the shooting of a reality show, Being Lara Bingle.
Lyons says Bingle knew the pictures had been taken and was in on the deal. Bingle vociferously denies that. “I am totally devastated and incredibly upset by what has happened. Darryn was my friend and I feel very betrayed. This has been a nightmare for me.”
Production company Eyeworks moved Bingle into the Bondi penthouse after deciding her own flat wasn’t glamorous enough for reality TV.
On Anzac Day, freelancer Oscar Bravo, who regularly sells pictures through Big, was standing near the skate ramp on the promenade and snapped Bingle, naked, opening the curtains of the flat.
Bingle insists she remained inside her own bedroom — but Lyons is “95 per cent” certain she stepped onto the balcony.
What is certain is that Bingle knows photographers are always watching. She has had “a relationship” with Big in the past and is tied up in business deals with Lyons.
Last Saturday Bingle invited The Sunday Telegraph to photograph her on the balcony as a promotion for the show.
By the time our photographer Sam Ruttyn returned to the newsroom, two agencies were selling pictures of “Lara being photographed” by a mystery shooter – Ruttyn – on the balcony.
Lyons claims he sent a contact sheet of the nude photos to Bingle’s manager Hermione Underwood before they went on sale. Underwood and Bingle say they only asked for the contact sheet after being told of its existence by “media contacts”. The contact sheet was briefly shown on Tuesday by Nine’s A Current Affair – prompting Bingle to threaten legal action. Big has now pulled the images from sale.
During the week Underwood allegedly spoke to one of Big’s regular clients, ACP Magazines, after learning one of the company’s men’s magazines was bidding for the shots.
ACP group picture editor Allan Fletcher denied speaking to Underwood, but a senior ACP insider said Underwood had asked Mr Fletcher to “call the dogs off”. Bingle’s publicist said it was Lara’s new PR team that had made the calls.
Lyons has become uncharacteristically shy when contacted for comment. He evaded The Sunday Telegraph’s repeated calls, eventually saying by email: “You have no idea how busy I am.”
By Emma Brown