Date: 18th March 2003
KYLIE Minogue has been accused by her former boyfriend, James Gooding, of pushing him to the brink of suicide as she relentlessly pursued fame and success.
Gooding, a model, said Minogue's flirting with American performer Justin Timberlake, 27, at the recent Brit Awards had driven him to take a potentially lethal cocktail of drugs, alcohol and pills.
Gooding, 26, who was accused of serially cheating on Minogue, 34, during their tumultuous, three-year relationship, is now devastated by her new affair with French actor Olivier Martinez, 37.
Martinez, dubbed "the French Brad Pitt", is best known outside France for his recent role in Unfaithful (2002), opposite Richard Gere.
"The Kylie the public knows is a cheeky, chirpy Aussie loaded with talent and buckets of sex appeal," Gooding told London's News Of The World newspaper.
"And that's the Kylie I fell in love with. Who wouldn't?
"But she turned into a self-obsessed, virtually friendless control freak, desperate to pursue her own ambitions.
"And this is the woman who nearly pushed me over the edge. None of her public saw that side of her, and even I was stunned by the full force of her selfishness.
"When we were together, we were very intense and passionate. But in any relationship, your partner does your head in at some point. And her obsession with success completely did mine in."
Gooding said he had been unfairly portrayed as "the womanising bastard who broke the heart of the nation's princess".
"I'm a flirt, I don't deny that, but Kylie flirts for England," he said. "She's as sexy in her private life as she is on stage and on telly.
"She doesn't fake her sexiness; it's all natural and for real.
"I'm angry and upset at the way she treated me."
On her cruel flirting Gooding revealed Minogue's decision to shun him at the Brit Awards was "the final straw".
"We'd spent Valentine's night together, and we'd slept with each other just weeks earlier. Even on the afternoon of the awards, we chatted and got on brilliantly, and I wished her luck," he said.
"That evening, I was in the audience and I saw Justin Timberlake caressing her bottom on stage. I wasn't jealous; I knew it was a stage act, and what bloke in that position wouldn't pinch her bum?
"But what ended our relationship was after the show.
"After their performance, Kylie was sitting opposite Justin when I went up to her and said `Hi'. She was very stand-offish. Then I asked her: `Do you fancy a drink?' She rudely snapped `No!'
"It was clear she felt being seen with a big American pop star like Justin was more important than our friendship. We had a blazing row, the worst we'd ever had."
On his suicide bid Minogue and Gooding eventually left the Brits function separately.
"After the row I went to a friend's place," he said.
"I needed someone to talk to.
"We had a couple of drinks, he got out some cocaine and I snorted a couple of lines. He helped calm me down. Then I went home, still drunk on champagne and in turmoil. I was so exhausted I passed out.
"But when I woke up I felt a black void had opened up beneath my feet and it was going to swallow me up."
Gooding said he then turned to a bottle of the tranquilliser Temazepam beside his bed.
"The bottle was half full and I grabbed a handful," he said. "I proceeded to swallow all 15 of the Temazepam until it was empty.
"I pressed the self-destruct button. It was a cry for help and I wanted to kill the emotional pain which I couldn't understand. It made me feel like a zombie."
On her lonely life Gooding added: "She lives in a very lonely, isolated world that I don't want to be part of. I wish her success, because that's what she wants.
"But no amount of money is worth the price she has had to pay. She has only a handful of friends, and she doesn't have time for those, as I painfully discovered."
The Daily Telegraph
Source: Press Release