HomeWorldDavid Walliams' Controversial Malta Film Awards Invoice To Be Published 'In The...

David Walliams’ Controversial Malta Film Awards Invoice To Be Published ‘In The Coming Days’, Tourism Minister Pledges

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We may soon finally get to know how much British comedian David Walliams was actually paid for hosting the Malta Film Awards back in January 2022.

Answering a question put forward by NET News earlier today, Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo said the total cost of the Mediterrane Film Festival will also be revealed along with Walliams’ invoices “in the coming days”.

This will be done after the Information and Data Protection Commissioner and the Data Protection Tribunal’s decisions were confirmed by a judge last month, with the Malta Film Commission being ordered to reveal the information after multiple Freedom Of Information requests, including ones filed by Lovin Malta and the Daphne Caruana Galizia Foundation.

“The court gave us a number of days for this to be done, and we will be following that sentence,” Bartolo said. “There you will have all your answers.”

The Malta Film Awards instantly rose to notoriety in 2022 when the extremely glamorous show was accused of going far over its budget… a budget which was already more than what the Commission hands out in grants to local filmmakers (some €600,000 in total).

Barely a month after the show went down, lawyer Jason Azzopardi had claimed that David Walliams was paid €200,000 from the by-then €2+ million budget (the original allocated budget was that of €400,000). When this accusation was brought up, Minister Bartolo had refused to answer, accusing the Nationalist Party of “hating” and “attacking” the film industry and stating that the last PN government had spent €1.1 million on the European Film Awards back in 2011, twice the set budget.

Meanwhile, when asked about the show’s controversy weeks after it had aired, Film Commission Johann Grech had refused to confirm whether the total expenses ended up going beyond the original budget, only stating it will be “value for money” when questioned.

One year later, in June 2023, the Mediterrane Film Festival brought a number of other high-profile names to the islands, with highlights ranging from a Russel Crowe concert to the world premiere of Deep Fear, attended by Madalina Diana Ghenea and Ed Westwick.

Since then, the Malta Film Commission was involved in another controversy, when it emerged in August 2023 that over €45 million in taxpayer money were spent to fund the Gladiator sequel partially filmed on the islands.

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