A friend of Meghan Markle’s has slammed a media outlet she claims “photoshopped” the royals’ Christmas card in a “malicious” attack on the Duchess of Sussex.
Actress Janina Gavankar – who said she took the adorable e-card photo of the young family that circulated on Christmas Eve – has lashed out at the Daily Mail on Twitter after an article emerged claiming Meghan’s face had been photoshopped.
The report based the claims around discussions on Twitter and included a blown-up version of the photo originally posted on the The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust Twitter account, an organisation both Meghan and Harry have been involved with.
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The photo has not appeared on the Sussex’s official Instagram account.
As illustrated in the tweet below, the image used by the Daily Mail, Meghan’s face is in sharp focus, while in the version beside it both Meghan and Harry’s faces are blurred.
The image on the right appears to be the photo shared on Christmas Eve, while the source of the photo on the left is unknown.
News.com.au is not suggesting the Duke and Duchess or the Daily Mail has edited the photo.
The Daily Mail story, posted yesterday, quoted social media speculation claiming Meghan appeared “significantly more in focus” in the image.
It featured stills of the black and white gif and went on to suggest that Meghan’s face could have been “taken in another similar photograph in the same shoot and then added onto the picture they released”.
The Daily Mail has credited the seemingly photoshopped image to “@SussexRoyal”, which has not posted the image in their official Christmas greeting.
Morning Show actress Gavankar, a close friend of the Duchess, called the report a continuation of the Daily Mail’s “campaign” against Meghan.
“Nice photoshop of my non-photoshopped image,” Gavankar tweeted. “Now may we all get back to the spirit of Christmas and not the spirit of maliciousness.”
The star had earlier revealed she was behind the lens of the festive snap in which Meghan sits in the background next to her husband Prince Harry while their seven-month-old gazes into the camera in the foreground.
It was originally tweeted as a gif via The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust on Christmas Eve that read “Just sharing the sweetest Christmas Card from our President and Vice-President, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Very Merry Christmas, everyone!”
Referencing the Daily Mail’s coverage of the Christmas greeting, 39-year-old Gavankar wrote “your campaign against my friend continues”.
Gavankar earlier shared the gif of the new parents looking on adoringly at their son in front of a Christmas tree with a glowing message.
“So proud to have taken the Christmas photo for one of my best friends and her family,” Gavankar wrote.
The royal couple is locked in a legal battle with the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday over what they allege are tabloid rumours published about them.
The lawsuit specifically addresses the publication of Markle’s private letters to her estranged father Thomas Markle amid claims they were heavily edited.
“The Mail on Sunday stands by the story it published and will be defending this case vigorously. Specifically, we categorically deny that the Duchess’s letter was edited in any way that changed its meaning,” a spokesman for the paper said, according to NBC News.