Speed Reads


The Gwyneth Paltrow ski crash trial's 8 strangest moments, from Taylor Swift to King Kong

Gwyneth Paltrow's ski crash trial has turned into the kind of crash the internet can't look away from. As the trial, in which the actress is accused of skiing into retired optometrist Terry Sanderson before bolting from the scene, nears its end, these were some of the strangest moments Twitter won't soon forget: 

1. Paltrow grilled about friendship with Taylor Swift: Paltrow was unexpectedly forced to confirm the status of her relationship with Taylor Swift under oath after Sanderson's attorney questioned her on whether she got the idea to counter-sue for $1 from the singer. "Are you good friends with Taylor Swift?" attorney Kristin VanOrman asked. Paltrow responded that they're "friendly" but not "good friends," and the judge sustained an objection to VanOrman's follow-up: "You've never given Ms. Swift personal, intimate gifts for Christmas?"

2. Paltrow is asked if she's a good tipper: Another seemingly random aside came when VanOrman, after asking about the price of Paltrow's ski lessons, asked, "I'm assuming, and you're under oath here, that you're a good tipper?" The actress laughed before affirming, "Yes." 

3. Attorney is 'jealous' of Paltrow's height: At certain points in her questioning, VanOrman seemed to speak with the cadence of a stand-up comedian, as when she asked Paltrow how tall she is. "I'm just under 5'10," Paltrow told her, to which VanOrman said, "I am so jealous. I have to wear four-inch heels just to make it to 5'5." At another point, VanOrman said that Paltrow is "small but mighty" before playfully adding, "Actually, you're not that small." She also laughed as she said that Paltrow "probably had a better ski outfit" than everybody else on the slopes. 

4. Accuser appears to compare Paltrow to Epstein: Sanderson seemed to bizarrely compare Paltrow to deceased sex offender Jeffrey Epstein by declaring on the stand that if people aren't held accountable for their actions, "What are they gonna do? They're gonna do it again. Now we have the molesting of young children on an island." Paltrow's attorney objected to this "ridiculous testimony."

5. Accuser asked about comparing Paltrow to King Kong: Sanderson was grilled about previously comparing the actress to "King Kong coming out of the jungle," saying he "meant to say King Kong just chased someone out of the jungle." He also testified he doesn't remember referring to her as Godzilla. 

6. Paltrow attorney admits he was 'an a--': But Sanderson wasn't the only one to offer a mea culpa. After Paltrow's attorney Stephen Owens grilled a witness, Sanderson's daughter, he subsequently apologized to her and admitted, "I was being an a-- earlier." 

7. Paltrow asks to thank bailiffs with treats: Paltrow's attorney made an unusual request early in the trial after telling the judge that she "wanted to bring in treats for the bailiffs for how helpful they've been." But Sanderson's team objected. "Thank you, but no thank you," the judge said. 

8. Paltrow bemoans losing 'half a day of skiing': In a quote that was roundly mocked on social media, Paltrow testified that Sanderson prevented her from enjoying the rest of her expensive vacation because thanks to the accident, which his attorneys allege caused him permanent brain damage, "I lost half a day of skiing."