Ex-Vanity Fair photo editor Rachel Williams is currently suing Netflix for defamation in relation to the television show “Inventing Anna.” A young Russian woman named Anna Sorokin (Julia Garner) deceived members of New York City’s high society into thinking she was a German heiress named Anna Delvey with access to an inherited fortune in the series written by Shonda Rhimes. To fund the creation of a prestigious art club, Sorokin was able to embezzle thousands of dollars from prospective investors and her closest friends.
Williams, a buddy of Sorokin’s in New York City who worked out with personal trainer Kacy Duke, was portrayed by Scandal’s Katie Lowes (Laverne Cox). Williams, Duke, and Sorokin travel to Morocco during the concert with the understanding that Sorokin would pay for it, but like she has done numerous times, the con artist shortchanges the hotel and forces Williams to use the corporate card to cover the costs. The photo editor almost lost her job at Vanity Fair because of this. Williams, however, later profits from this circumstance by aiding the police in the arrest of Sorokin and marketing her account as a featured article for the magazine and a subsequent book. Despite her supposed connection with the title character, “Inventing Anna“ presents Williams as both a victim of Sorokin and a person out for money and fame.
Williams has filed a complaint against Netflix in federal court in Delaware over her portrayal in the well-liked biographical television series Inventing Anna, according to Deadline. Netflix “deliberately took a decision for dramatic purposes to…portray [Williams] as a greedy, snobbish, disloyal, dishonest, cowardly, manipulative and opportunistic person,” according to the complaint. Williams is accused of calling Neff Davs (Alexis Floyd) a “paid bitch,” cheerfully taking Sorokin’s “gifts,” and “encouraging Sorokin to book a more opulent hotel suite for their vacation to Morocco,” among other incidents, in the show. Uncertain damages, a trial, and an injunction are all requested in the claim in order to get some defamatory parts of the Netflix series taken down. Read the statement made by Williams’ attorney Alexander Rufus-Isaacs below.
“The reason why we have had to file this lawsuit is because Netflix used Rachel’s real name and biographical details, and made her out to be a horrible person, which she is not. The devastating damage to her reputation could have been avoided if only Netflix had used a fictitious name and different details. Why didn’t they do this for her, when they did for so many other characters in the Series? Perhaps the reason was that she had chosen to play for the other team, i.e., HBO.”
Williams’ reputation was permanently damaged by the use of her real name in connection with the show’s unfavorable representation of her, according to Rufus-Isaacs. The majority of the people in the program, including Jessica Pressler, the author of the New York magazine piece on which “Inventing Anna” is based, were composite characters or had their names changed. However, the series uses Williams, Davis, and Duke’s genuine names. Williams is the friend who receives the worst portrayal out of the three.
Critics have been vocal since the beginning of “Inventing Anna” since Delvey received $320,000 from Netflix for the rights to the program, money that she then used for restitution and legal costs. Many people were also troubled by the show’s attempt to make Sorokin out to be a victim of society, despite the fact that she preyed on both high- and low-income earners. As the portrayal of Williams in “Inventing Anna” is examined and debated to establish whether or not she was actually a victim of the show, it is unclear whether Williams’ claim will hold up in court.