Scarlett Johansson has admitted to taking the explicit photographs of herself which have now been leaked online. The 26-year-old actress, who has never appeared fully nude in her movies, has been left humiliated after the explicit pictures were published on a website yesterday.
The FBI has, meanwhile, been called in to investigate how the private photographs were hacked from her mobile phone – and it emerged today that it is closing in on the suspected hacker. Law enforcement sources told TMZ authorities are ‘honing in’ on the criminal gang, with the identity of one of the ringleaders known to the FBI.
Johansson is the latest victim of the phone-hacking ring thought to be responsible for stealing naked photos and videos from at least 50 female Hollywood celebrities. Johansson’s lawyer today issued a statement making it clear that his client took the explicit pictures.
One of the photographs shows her posing seductively with her top off, while in another her bare behind is visible in a mirror.
The photographs show wallpaper in the background which matches the design in previously seen pictures from inside her bedroom in Los Angeles.
While parts of her body have been exposed for her movie roles, she has never before been seen completely naked.
‘The highly personal and private photographs at issue capture our client self-posing in her own home in a state of undress and/or topless,’ the statement, from lawyer Marty Singer, read.
He also threatened to sue any media outlet which publishes the pictures under copyright laws – the fact that Johansson holds the rights confirms that she took the pictures and that they are authentic.
Authorities also today confirmed it is looking into the case.
‘The FBI is investigating a person or group responsible for a series of cyber intrusions of high-profile figures,’ FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said.
‘This would include many devices – could mean a computer, desktop, laptop, iPad, cell phone… intrusions into personal online accounts too.’
Other stars reportedly targeted include actresses Jessica Alba, Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez and Miley Cyrus, as well as singer Christina Aguilera.
Gossip sites in America have been speculating as to whether the photographs were meant for her ex-husband, actor Ryan Reynolds, or any of the men she has dated since the break-up, who include fellow Hollywood A-lister Sean Penn.
Bloggers have linked the leaks to a hacking group called Anonymous that has boasted of targeting celebrities.
Black Swan star Mila Kunis was also named as a target, with hackers allegedly uncovering picture of a shirtless and ‘seductive’ Justin Timberlake on her phone.
One image is said to show Timberlake wearing pink underwear on his head while there is another reported to be a separate explicit shot of an unidentified male.
A fourth image is said to show Kunis in a bath, covered by the tub from the neck down.
Kunis and Timberlake, co-stars in the film Friends With Benefits, have long denied rumours of an off-screen romance. It is not clear if the Johansson and Kunis incidents are related.
Celebrity website TMZ.com said Johansson had called in the FBI as a ‘criminal act’ had been committed. ‘The FBI is aware of the alleged hacking incident and is looking into it,’ an FBI official told FoxNews.com.
Now the star has threatened to sue anyone who publishes the nude photos. Her lawyer Marty Singer has now written to various websites, warning of legal action.
The photographs are currently still being shown on buzzfeed and Daily Gossip, among other sites. ‘If you fail to comply, you will be acting at your own peril. Please govern yourselves accordingly,’ the letter states.
Johansson was named earlier this year as one of 50 victims who had their mobile phones or emails compromised by a hacking gang. High School Musical star Vanessa Hudgens met with the FBI to discuss the hacking of her Gmail account after photos of her kissing another woman were leaked online.
Sources connected to Johansson told TMZ the actress had called in the FBI to investigate the leak. She is currently filming the super-hero film The Avengers with Captain America star Chris Evans and Hollywood A-lister Robert Downey Jr. [via Daily Mail (UK) and AceShowBiz]