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DIANA AND ME

SYNOPSIS:
Rob Naylor (Dominic West) is a photographer, a paparazzi, chasing everyone from Kylie Minogue and John Michael to the Princess of Wales, trying to get that exclusive photo which will make his fortune. Diana Spencer (Toni Collette) is from an Australian country town, and shares the same name and birthday as the Princess. She is fascinated by the real Diana Spencer and after winning a trip to London courtesy of a women’s magazine, Diana comes close to meeting Diana, but misses out when she’s pushed out of the way by Rob. The brief encounter changes Diana’s life. In search of the Princess, she Rob team up – albeit for different reasons - and stalk her, or think they do. They get themselves into an Elton John party where she and other celebs will mingle, but Rob’s profession proves a handicap. And Diana’s ‘neanderthal’ Aussie boyfriend (Malcolm Kennard) is nonplussed by Diana’s antics. But what each gives up is compensated by what each is given.

"A terrific script, excellent direction and outstanding performances make this film thoroughly enjoyable, entertaining, thought provoking and occasionally moving. Toni Collette is at her best, full of nuance and naturalness; Dominic West is outstanding as the London photographer, avoiding the traps of predictability, and Malcolm Kennard is marvellous in a thankless supporting role as the boyfriend from Oz. And Penne Hackforth-Jones has a brilliant cameo. Above all, it is the pleasant surprise that the film does work on every level that makes it such a joy; we had anticipated a clumsy romantic comedy and what we get is an emotive and effective love story with something to say about the topical issues of privacy, paparrazzi and psychology. In case you’re worried, the real Diana’s image is never invaded, with Keith Wagstaff’s clever camera teasing with glimpses, and retaining a sense of good taste. But there are a couple of surprises in store, too. Well worth the money."
Andrew L. Urban

"While recent events have obviously greatly changed the tone of Diana & Me, there is no doubt that the film stands on its own as a highly original story, which effectively and honestly explores the many paradoxes and contradictions of fame and it’s consequences. David Parker has developed the many complexities, in a sensitively directed film that excels in capturing the essence of the key relationships. Matt Ford’s script expertly brings the characters to life, and endears us to them by their very human frailties. Toni Collette is wonderful as Diana, the star-obsessed country girl, whose very gaucheness seduces us, just as she seduced us in Muriel’s Wedding. Her down-to-earth, no-nonsense appeal tantalises, and throughout we are captured by a sense of good-old Australian ‘lack of bull-shit’. An authentic Australian character, with recognisable traits. As Rob, Dominic West is complementary and outstanding; his brash, outgoing performance is combined with undertones of great sensitivity. He is at once likeable (for who he is), despicable (for what he does), and endearing (for the struggle within). Special mention to Malcolm Kennard as the Aussie boyfriend, who almost steals the film, with great comic timing and delivery that is a delight. Victoria Eagger’s role as the London magazine correspondent, is both over-written and over-acted: the caricature approach falls flat. The cameos are amusing diversions, and star-spotters will enjoy a few celebrity glimpses. It’s a cleverly crafted film that does not rely on subjective involvement with the real Princess Diana’s media love affair, nor as Andrew says, does it trespass on her integrity. Diana and Me cleverly broaches topical issues emotively, emotionally and honestly, before coherently marrying them with a memorable love story punctuated by issues of the heart."
Louise Keller

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DAVID PARKER INTERVIEW

TONI COLLETTE INTERVIEW



DIANA AND ME
(M 15+)
(Australia)

CAST: Toni Collette, Dominic West, Malcolm Kennard, Victoria Eagger, John Simm, Serena Gordon, Roger Barclay, Tom Hillier, Penne Hackforth-Jones

DIRECTOR: David Parker

PRODUCER: Matt Carroll

SCRIPT: Matt Ford (from a screenplay by Elizabeth Coleman)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Keith Wagstaff

EDITOR: Bill Murphy

MUSIC: Brett Rosenberg

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Jon Dowding

RUNNING TIME: 98 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: December 4, 1997







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