When most of us change jobs, we’re treated to a Woolies mud cake and some luke-warm bubbly. For Lisa Wilkinson, her defection to The Project meant a week of national headlines, countless opinion pieces, and hoards of paparazzi stalking her from the bushes.
Speaking to Bachelorette and fellow pap victim Sophie Monk via a Huffington Post Facebook live on Monday, the former Today Show stalwart said the scrutiny has been relentless since she announced her departure from the Channel 9 program on October 16.
“I hid in my driveway because I didn’t want to take part… The paps, they were paps over my fence on my private property. It was upsetting my kids,” she said.
“I spoke to one of them [and said], ‘You’re actually at the point where you are upsetting my kids.’ On the first day I smiled and gave them a couple of quotes, but [then] I said, ‘There’s nothing to see here.'”
Still, they didn’t budge. This is when the 57-year-old mother of three employed a technique favoured by another famous Aussie.
“Russell Crowe famously once said just keeping wearing the same clothes and you’ll drive the price [of the photos] down,” Wilkinson said.
“So I kept wearing black and the same sunglasses and they lost interest in me!”
Monk sympathised. Since choosing millionaire publican Stu Laundy on The Bachelorette finale earlier this month, the 37-year-old has faced intense scrutiny over the status of her relationship, with photographers hoping to catch evidence to support speculation the pair have already split.
“It’s weird isn’t it?” the singer-turned-actress said. “It would be illegal for anyone else to be stalking someone over the fence. But for us it’s [normal]. When did we sign up to be OK with that?
“That’s when it’s tough, when you want to deal with something yourself, but you can’t. I’ve just learned to just deal with it. But it is tough.”
The Mamamia OutLoud team discuss Lisa’s Today Show exit. (Post continues below.)