Posted on Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:20 PM PDT
Zhang and then-boyfriend, Israeli multimillionaire Aviv "Vivi" Nevo in St Barth in January, 2009 (Spread Pictures)
Zhang Ziyi's legal team will appear in court on Friday for a hearing in her defamation lawsuit against China Free Press and a journalist for publishing claims that she is a high-paid prostitute who had sexual relations with high-ranking Chinese government officials.
The Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon starlet is looking to force Weican Null Meng to give up the sources that led to his reports (published in Chinese dissident news website Boxun) that Ziyi had earned $100 million as an escort. Ziyi's subsequent libel lawsuit said the prostitution story was not true and when the publication was contacted about the falsity of the allegations, they refused to issue a retraction.
Zhang says that the scandal has hurt her financially and she added that it has ruined potential endorsement deals with Michael Kors and French automaker Citroen, among others.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Meng testified that there were three sources that formed the basis of his reports, but Ziyi's attorneys at the Glaser Weil Fink law firm describe the information as "nothing more than rumors, innuendo and hearsay -- several if not many times removed."
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