Lifetime Film Explores Diana Conspiracy
BeansTalk Note: We tried to watch this, but our copy had horrible sound and huge chunks that would simply go silent. But, we can say from what we saw that Jennifer Morrison is very good – we never realized what a good actress she is.
The film’s premise is based on a novel by Noel Botham. Morrison plays the central figure, a reporter who convinces her British editor to send her to Paris to report on what Princess Diana was up to with Dodi Fayed at the Ritz. She not only manages to stay at the Ritz, she apparently used to date (and here’s where we’re not 100% certain, since this is where the sound blew out) the French head of police or head of security or something – but he’s official. She’s friends with one of the motorcycle riding paps, so not only does she get the inside scoop from the handsome French guy but she actually gets on the pap’s motorcycle and witnesses the accident. At this point, we had to stop watching because we were missing too much dialogue.
We were reluctant to even watch this because as a royalty book and memorabilia collector, we’re not so keen on the “speculative” – or what is sometimes called “entertainments” (as in Jane Austen sequel books). But from what we could tell, it seemed to be a well-constructed film. What seemed most distractingly improbable is how Morrison’s character manages to be right there, in several locations.
Here’s what Lifetime is releasing about the telefilm:
Ten years after her death, Princess Diana remains an iconic figure to millions worldwide, the subject of more than 180 books into the transcendent achievements of her life and the circumstances of her death. Lifetime Television is marking the anniversary of that tragic evening of August 31, 1997, with three nights of special programming featuring a seminal moment in television journalism and a Lifetime Original Movie Event, beginning with the candid and explosive 1995 BBC landmark interview conducted by award-winning journalist Martin Bashir, airing Saturday, August 25, 2007 at 8 p.m. (ET/PT), Sunday, August 26 at 5 p.m. (ET/PT) and Monday, August 27 at 11 p.m. (ET/PT).
During the now historic hour-long discussion – which was her first-ever one-on-one sit down with the media about her personal life -- Princess Di shared some of her most intimate secrets, which ultimately confirmed years of rumors and speculation, and sent shock waves throughout the British monarchy, Great Britain and beyond its shores.
Following the poignant conversation will be the Lifetime Original Movie “The Murder of Princess Diana,” which airs August 25 at 9PM (ET/PT) and August 26 at 6PM (ET/PT) as well as Monday, August 27 at 9PM (ET/PT). Starring Jennifer Morrison (“House”), the movie is a fictionalized account of the book by the same name by Noel Botham, which theorized that the car crash that claimed the lives of the Princess of Wales, her companion Dodi Fayed and their chauffeur Henri Paul, was a conspiracy.
In the revolutionary BBC interview, the “People’s Princess” opened up to Bashir about her personal and private life. She shed light on the breakdown of her marriage to Prince Charles and how the intense media scrutiny made her personal life almost unbearable. Additionally, she discussed her depression and eating disorder, her love affair with her riding trainer James Hewitt, as well as the difficulties of raising her children in a royal fishbowl.
During the interview, Princess Diana said:
· About self-destructive behavior: “Yes, I did inflict upon myself. I didn't like myself. I was ashamed because I couldn't cope with the pressures.”
· About her turbulent marriage: “My husband and I had to keep everything together because we didn't want to disappoint the public, and yet obviously there was a lot of anxiety going on within our four walls.”
· About being the Queen of England: “I'd like to be a queen of people's hearts, but I don't see myself being Queen of this country. I don't think many people will want me to be Queen. Actually, when I say many people I mean the establishment that I married into, because they’ve decided that I'm a non-starter.”
LifetimeTV.com features two clips from the interview. In the first, the late Princess of Wales discusses how she found peace coming to the aid of those rejected by society, and in the second clip, Diana reflects on what she expected entering into marriage with Prince Charles and how the media attention weighed on her through the years. The site also features additional broadband video including remembrances from women on Diana’s legacy.
Martin Bashir was named co-anchor of ABC News’ “Nightline” in October 2005 and is based in New York. The internationally acclaimed, award-winning journalist joined ABC’s newsmagazine “20/20” in September 2004, and continues to report for the program. Mr. Bashir is best known for making landmark documentaries, including “Living with Michael Jackson,” and is also known for his investigative reporting for ITV, British television’s most popular network.
The BBC Interview with Princess Diana and Martin Bashir was originally part of the broadcaster’s “Panorama” series. Mike Robinson was producer and Steve Hewlett was editor. The interview was acquired from BBC Worldwide America.
“The Murder of Princess Diana” is produced by Universal TV Limited, formerly WTTV Limited, the television arm of Working Title Films (“United 93,” “Bridget Jones’ Diary,” “Pride and Prejudice”) for Lifetime Television. Simon Wright (“Tales of the City”) is the executive producer and Priscilla Parish (“The Robber Bride”) serves as associate producer. Julia Stannard (“Sharpe’s Challenge”) is producer and John Strickland (“Big Love”) is the director. Emma Reeves (“Doctors”) and Reg Gadney (“Kennedy”) wrote the teleplay.
LIFETIME is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, LIFETIME is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and their families. LIFETIME Television, LMN, Lifetime Real Women and Lifetime Digital (including LifetimeTV.com) are part of LIFETIME Entertainment Services, a 50/50 joint venture of The Hearst Corporation and The Walt Disney Company.
BTW: Morrison is blonde in this -- and has broken her engagement with her House co-star Jesse Spencer.