Laurence Fox: How did the former actor become such a controversial figure?

Previously in the spotlight at the end of September 2023 for a 'sexist rant' on GB News, Laurence Fox is now back in it. This time because the former actor lost his libel case against a Stonewall trustee and a drag artist. A look at his career...

Laurence Fox libel case
© Dave Benett / GETTY IMAGES
Laurence Fox libel case

On 26 September 2023, Laurence Fox was invited to be a guest on Dan Wootton’s show on GB News. In the segment, Fox was asked to comment on statements made by journalist Ava Evans regarding men’s mental health.

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In the segment, Fox proceeded to say:

show me a single, self-respecting man that would like to climb into bed with that woman… ever… ever.
That little woman has been fed... spoon-fed oppression day after day after day, starting with the lie about the gender pay gap.
We need powerful, strong, amazing women who make great points for themselves. We don't need these feminist 4.0. They're pathetic and embarrassing.
Who'd want to s**g that?

After the segment, Dan Wootton apologised on X but it wasn’t enough. Both he and Laurence were suspended with immediate effect on 27 September and Laurence Fox refused to fully and credibly apologise to Ava Evans. But how did Laurence Fox, a former actor, end up on GB News as a known enemy of ‘woke culture’?

Laurence Fox, how he became a controversial figure

Laurence Fox’ career started pretty uneventfully. He trained as an actor at a reputable drama school and started his acting career. He made his acting debut in 2001 in a horror-thriller. In 2006, Fox was cast as a lead in the ITV drama Lewis, a spin-off of the classic show Inspector Morse. In 2015, Fox and his co-star decided to retire their roles and move on from Lewis.

Laurence Fox also had a career on stage acting in classics such ‘Tis Pity She’s A Whore. In the midst of his career, in 2007, Fox received a police caution after punching a photographer outside a theatre. Outside of acting, Fox also launched a career as a musician and he released his first album in 2016 and another one in 2019.

In 2020, Fox was dropped not by one but by two talent agencies. The second one dropped him after he said a public member was ‘racist’ for calling out his white privilege. However this was the result of what he himself calls his radicalism. It is reported that in an interview with The Times, Fox admitted that YouTube videos had led to his radical beliefs.

It therefore came to moderate surprise when new-born channel GB News hired Fox to host a show on Friday nights. The news channel claimed that it was the house of free speech. One of their values is: ‘the right of every individual to form and share their views’.

Fox really benefited from that value and so up until Tuesday 26 September 2023 when he pushed it too far.

How Laurence Fox changed his public persona

Since his change of persona Laurence Fox has been at the heart of several controversies.

First off, his social media presence is in itself filled with controversy. For instance his X bio used to read ‘trans lesbian of colour’. Moreover, he tends to use X to broadcast his views in a… let’s call it relaxed way.

In 2020, Fox revealed himself as a Covid sceptic. In 2022, he wore a shirt that said ‘No vaccines needed. I have an immune system.’ Covid is far from being his only topic of discussion.

In the past and in his video statement from 28 September, Laurence Fox is a believer that the Black Lives Matter movement is not really about fighting systemic racism but that it is about ‘revenge.’ Moreover, in previous years he has expressed his dislike of non-white actors who speak of racism in the entertainment industry, only after they’re famous. About that he said:

The most annoying thing is the minute a black actor - it's the same with working-class actors - the minute they've got five million quid in the bank, every interview they do is about how racism is rampant and rife in the industry

Famously, Fox also tried to run for office and challenged Sadiq Khan for the job of Mayor of London under the flag of his own party, the Reclaim Party. He only got 47,000 votes.

The latest scandal regarding Ava Evans intertwines all of the previous scandals. Indeed, in the video which was expected to be an apology, he tackled the lack of free speech in Britain, his dislike of some feminists, Covid, BLM and also tried to make a point about a widespread hatred of men.

Laurence Fox loses his libel case

The news fell on 29 January 2024. As BBC News reports Laurence Fox 'lost a High Court libel case with two people he called p****philes on social media'. The former actor was being sued by Stonewall trustee Simon Blake and drag artist Crystal.

The case came about when Fox, Blake and Crystal exchanged words on X about Sainsbury's choice to mark Black History Month. The public conversation took place in October 2020 when Fox called for a boycott of the supermarket brand. Blake and Crystal said his call for a boycott and himself were 'racist' to which Fox responded by calling them 'p****philes'.

Blake and Crystal sued for libel and on Monday a High Court judge ruled in their favour stating:

Mr Fox’s labelling of Mr Blake and Mr Seymour as paedophiles was, on the evidence, probabilities and facts of this case, seriously harmful, defamatory and baseless.


The law affords few defences to defamation of this sort. Mr Fox did not attempt to show these allegations were true, and he was not able to bring himself on the facts within the terms of any other defence recognised in law.

At the time, Laurence Fox countersued claiming that being called a racist 'was a ''reputation-destroying allegation'' and ''career-ending'''. However, The Guardian reports that his claims were dismissed on Monday.

Read more:

Who is Ava Evans, the journalist targeted by Laurence Fox's misogynistic rant?

Dan Wootton: Where did he go after his GB News exit and what his comeback entails

10 most complained about TV moments revealed by Ofcom: From Dan Wootton Tonight to Love Island


Sky News: What did Laurence Fox say about Ava Evans on GB News? 'Unacceptable' comments in full and reaction to his suspension

The New Statesman: The radicalisation of Laurence Fox shows the worrying power of right-wing YouTube

GB News: Our Editorial Charter

Sky News: Who is Laurence Fox – and what controversies has he faced?

Laurence Fox on X

BBC News: Laurence Fox loses High Court libel case over social media row

The Guardian: Laurence Fox loses libel battle with Twitter users he called paedophiles

Dan Wootton suspended after Laurence Fox exposes him and GB News in shocking new tweets Dan Wootton suspended after Laurence Fox exposes him and GB News in shocking new tweets