Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 December 2014

How we know Naomi Watts' Diana film will be a flop

Royal whitewash: Naomi Watts utters some dire lines as Diana
Royal whitewash: Naomi Watts utters some dire lines as Diana
Naomi Watts arriving for the Diana premiere at the Odeon Leicester Square, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday September 5, 2013. Photo credit should read: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
Naveen Andrews arriving for the Diana premiere at the Odeon Leicester Square, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday September 5, 2013. Photo credit should read: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

Diana is a controversial film. I know that because there has been much shock and awe at the mere mention of its name, the sheer bald audacity of its existence, in the run-up to its UK release next week.

Kate Middleton has allegedly worked hard to get a "distressed" William to "focus on the future" as the the film "forces" members of Diana's family to 'relive the events leading up to her tragic death'.

This is another way of saying the film concentrates on the last few years of Diana's life. Beyond that fact, the reality is that this is a movie so terrified of upsetting anyone it floats beyond the horizon of credibility within five minutes, creating a version of the People's Princess so saintly and infallible the Virgin Mary looks positively wicked in comparison.

"I want to help people," simpers the put-upon Princess in a line already provoking sniggers from cinema trailer watchers. If this is director Oliver Hirschbiegel's attempt to augment or, more likely, hitch a lift on the back of the enduring Diana myth, it's about as convincing as the Northern Ireland team's "moral victory"' against Luxembourg.

Let's hope the final nail in this ridiculous film's coffin is the obnoxious response from distributors, Entertainment One, to Simon Mayo's innocuous tweet stating that star Naomi Watts had walked out of their interview. The company has allegedly banned Radio 5 Live from talking to any of its "talent" in future. What howlingly bad-tempered behaviour. Just because they have a stinker on their hands and they know it.

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