The Hollywood actor’s new role, if greenlit, will be filmed by many cameras and viewed around the world. And when he says his lines, George Clooney won’t have the safety net of a script to fall back on if he ends up testifying in the Italian Prime Minister’s trial.
Silvio Berlusconi’s lawyers have called upon Clooney to testify in the politician and media mogul’s trial in light of the allegation that Berlusconi paid an underage woman for sex and subsequently abused his powers to cover it up.
(More on TIME.com: See pictures of Silvio Berlusconi and the politics of sex)
Showgirl Ruby (whose real name is Karima el-Mahroug), was 17 at the time, and has told prosecutors that she saw Clooney and his Italian girlfriend, Elisabetta Canalis, at an event hosted by Berlusconi. In a statement, Clooney refuted the claims, saying that, “It seems odd since I’ve only met Berlusconi once and that was in an attempt to get aid into Darfur.”
A judge will decide if Clooney (and indeed the 78 other people that the defense has listed as potential witnesses, including soccer stars, showgirls and government ministers) will attend the April 6 trial (for his part, Clooney hasn’t said whether he’s available).
But if it does happen, it won’t actually be the first time that Clooney’s taken to the stand in Italy. He testified in a fraud trial in 2010 surrounding a fashion label that used his name without permission. Predictably, both fans and paparazzi swarmed the courthouse in large numbers but that would be but a mere rehearsal compared to this main feature (via AP)
(More on TIME.com: See pictures of George Clooney in Sudan)