Famed photographer Annie Leibovitz is tonight weighing up legal options after the emergence of her supposedly u2018unretouchedu2019 images of a US television star, AP can exclusively reveal.


The ‘pre-Photoshop’ portraits of actress Lena Dunham appeared on US website Jezebel. There is no suggestion that it, or Vogue, acted illegally

Leibovitz shot portraits of Lena Dunham, who appears in television series Girls, for the February issue of the US version of Vogue magazine.

American website Jezebel offered $10,000 for ‘pre-Photoshop‘ versions of the Vogue images, describing the actress as ‘unabashedly feminist’.

‘Her body is real. She is real. And… as lovely as the Vogue pictures are, they’re probably not terribly real,’ stated the Jezebel website last week.

Jezebel subsequently published a set of ‘unretouched’ photos it had obtained.

It is not clear who may be the potential target of Leibovitz’s legal team, or the nature of any ensuing action, as many parties are involved in a celebrity photo shoot, from studio to publication.

There is no suggestion that either Jezebel or Vogue acted illegally.

However, AP understands that Leibovitz is far from happy.

‘They are looking at what [legal] options are open to them,’ a source close to Leibovitz told Amateur Photographer (AP).

AP sought urgent comment from Jezebel’s Editor-in-Chief Jessica Coen who tonight told AP: ‘The photos came to us via an anonymous source.’

AP’s source, meanwhile, claims that Leibovitz would not have given permission for the unaltered images to be published.

Leibovitz’s spokesman in the UK declined to comment on the matter.

Dunham, 27, told Slate, a US current affairs website: ‘I understand that for people there is a contradiction between what I do and being on the cover of Vogue; but frankly I really don’t know what the Photoshopping situation is… I know that I really felt like Vogue supported me and wanted to put a depiction of me on the cover. I never felt bullied into anything…

‘I haven’t been keeping track of all the reactions, but I know some people have been very angry about the cover and that confuses me a little…’

Hildy Kuryk, director of communications for Vogue, based in New York, said the magazine would not be issuing any comment.