Tributes will be paid to the late George Michael at a special concert next year.
Dame Esther Rantzen has revealed plans to hold a concert in memory of the late George Michael.
The late musician tragically died at his home in Goring-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, on Christmas Day (25.12.16) and to commemorate the star the Childline founder is organising a show with an all-star line up as a tribute to George - who made a number of generous donations over the years - and to coincide with the organisation's 30th anniversary.
Speaking to the Daily Mirror, Esther said: ''I think it would be wonderful to celebrate him with a tribute concert next year. George helped us to reach out to hundreds of thousands of children through his generosity. I met him a couple of times, he approached us, rather than us going cap in hand to him, but it was an intensely personal gift.''
Oliver Hirschbiegel compared the failure of his Princess Diana movie to that of his Nazi movie.
In the wake of some truly scathing reviews towards his latest movie, Diana director Oliver Hirschbiegel has spoken out against a tidal wave of bad press that slated his movie, his actors, his directing and sent his royal biopic plummeting down the box office charts in the UK.
Naomi Watts Has Now Been Saddled With The Unfortunate Movie.
Faced with British critics who heaved in revulsion at the "cheap and cheerless" attempt to finally turn the life of the late Diana Princess Of Wales into a palatable movie, Hirschbiegel has spoken out to calm the storm or at least save his reputation. Whilst the Telegraph labelled the film as "a special class of awful," The Guardian elaborated saying Diana is "an excruciatingly well-intentioned, reverential and sentimental biopic about her troubled final years, laced with bizarre cardboard dialogue."
The much-maligned director has his say.
It’s pretty fair to say that Diana – the film – was an unmitigated disaster. It would actually be quite unfair to say anything else. But while the critics were bashing away at their keyboard, submitting their negative reviews and sitting back, watching the slew of other derogatory reviews hit the net, spare a thought for poor Oliver Hirschbiegel, who had to read them all.
Naomi Watts might be regretting her decision to get on board as Diana
He said the negative press surrounding the film was "devastating, but when you make a film you don't think about the reactions" (BBC)
The marketing team probably won't get a pat on the back for this one
A 6x4ft poster for Diana, the film chronicling the last two years of the princess’s life, has been placed just yards away from where she tragically lost her life in a car accident, causing controversy and outrage.
The movie has failed miserably with the critics
The iconic gold-leafed Flame of Liberty, which would become her unofficial memorial piece, stands metres away.
Continue reading: Insensitive Diana Poster Placement Causes Outrage
A closer look at why the critics hate Diana
It’s fair to say that Diana has been ‘panned’ by the critics; they didn’t enjoy it, and while they tried to retain a modicum of respect – it is about Princess Diana of course, a national hero – it was difficult to disguise their disdain. But what exactly went wrong? What made The Times call it “atrocious and intrusive”?
Naomi Watts as Diana.
A lot of the vitriol can be found pointing towards Stephen Jeffreys, the man who adapted Kate Snell’s book. The screenplay has taken a fair bit of heat, with many outlets bemoaning its sincerity. The Times congratulated the film’s star, Naomi Watts for “doing her level best with a squirmingly embarrassing script,” adding that "this film is still atrocious and intrusive.”
Continue reading: Defending 'Diana': What Went Wrong With The Royal Biopic?
They weren't cruel, but 'Diana' certainly didn't impress.
Given the late Princess Diana’s status as an Icon in the U.K, reviews for her biopic, in which Naomi Watts plays the titular character, were always going to be scrutinised closely by readers. It’s possibly testament to how bad the film is that the critics have at least attempted to remain impartial.
Naomi Watts as Diana.
Indeed, many of the film’s criticisms – and there are plenty – stem from the sheer breadth of her story. From peacekeeping in the third world to her untimely and tragic death, it’s not a tale that can be easily conveyed in a cinematic format. Certainly not in 1h53m.
In a packed week of news, Pixar announced a release date for its Finding Nemo sequel, Heidi Klum recalled how a holiday almost turned into a nightmare and Magic Johnson reacted to his son's coming out.
Nemo's Back! Great news this week for fans of Finding Nemo, Pixar's smash-hit animation featuring the voices of and Albert Brooks. Yep, you guessed it, a sequel has been announced and will hit cinemas in 2015. 'Finding Dory' will focus on DeGeneres' character, though Pixar promises plenty of new faces!
Klum's Close Call: Sticking on the subject of the ocean, it was a close call for Heidi Klum in Hawaii this week when son Henry was dragged into a dangerous riptide. Luckily, the youngster is a strong swimmer and managed to claw his way back onto dry land. Phew!
Princess Diana was once smuggled into a London gay bar by Freddie Mercury, Kenny Everett and Cleo Rocos, the actress has revealed in her new autobiography
This may be one of the finer stories I have had to write in by time at Contact Music, the story of how the late Princess Diana snuck into a London gay club without being detected, all whilst dressed in drag and under the supervision of none other than Freddie Mercury and Kenny Everett. It just isn't the kind of thing you get to write about every day is it?
Princess Diana remains one of the most well remembered faces of the last century
The story, as retold by Everett's friend and co-star Cleo Rocos (who was there on the night) in her autobiography The Power of Positive Drinking, goes as follows. Following an afternoon of sipping champagne together in the summer of 1988, the four decided that they would hit up one of London's swankier joints that cater for specific tastes, at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern. It had always been Mercury and Everett's plan to go to the nightclub later in the day, but the pair were reluctant to take their female counterparts, especially Diana who at this stage was easily one of the most recognisable women on the planet. As you may have figured out, the night didn't end their for the Princess and after Everett initially shot down the idea of having Diana join them, Queen singer Mercury insisted that they "Let the girl have some fun."
Princess Diana's 'John Travolta' dress was the biggest seller at the auction in London.
The blue velvet gown that Princess Diana of Wales famously wore during her dance with John Travolta at the White House sold for $362,400 at auction in London on Tuesday (March 19, 2013). The dress, designed by Victoria Edelstein, was part of a collection of 10 of Diana's dresses that sold for a whopping $1.2 million in total.
Auctioneer Kerry Taylor said an anonymous British man bought the dress that Diana wore to the 1985 White House gala, where she was twirled around the dance-floor by Travolta, the star of Saturday Night Fever. "It was bought by a British gentleman who said he wanted to buy it as a surprise to cheer up his wife," Taylor said. "I hope the sale has really made someone's day." Wouldn't a nice bouquet of flowers have done?
Anyway, the auction - dubbed 'Fit For A Princess' - was billed as a "little history of Diana's life through her clothes." Two dresses made buy Diana's favourite designer Catherine Walker sold for $272,000, while an Edelstein-designer green velvet evening gown was the cheapest item at $36,280.
Continue reading: Who Bought Princess Diana's 'John Travolta' Gown For $362,400?
A collection of Princess Diana's most famous dresses goes under the hammer today.
The evening gown that Princess Diana of Wales wore while she danced with John Travolta at the White House is expected to fetch between £200,000-£300,000 when it goes up for auction in London today. The dress, as well as nine other evening gowns worn by the late Princess, will be sold at Kerry Taylor Auctions.
The gowns are expected to fetch up to £830,000 in total, the most expensive of which is the Victor Edelstein designed midnight blue velvet evening gown worn by Diana during a White House dinner hosted by President Ronald Reagan in 1985. It's also considered the most famous of the batch, after Diana wore it during her dance with Saturday Night Fever actor John Travolta during a dance across the White House floor. Travolta glided across the dance-floor and twirled the Princess around, much to the delight of the photographers covering the event. Though not a state visit, it was one of the most memorable trips that Diana and Prince Charles made to the U.S., with some 4,000 Americans turning out to watch the Royal couple's plane land in Washington.
The collection of dresses were last seen together at auction in New York in 1996, just two months before Diana was killed in a car crash in Paris.
Continue reading: Fancy Buying Princess Diana's 'John Travolta' Evening Gown?
The British Royal Family has condemned an Italian gossip magazine for threatening to publish paparazzi photographs of the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton as she walked on a secluded beach in a bikini while holidaying in Mustique earlier this week. The photographs - which show Middleton with a small baby-bump - are to be published in the Italian magazine 'Chi.'
St James's Palace has attacked the mag for breaching the Duchess' privacy, saying in a statement, "We are disappointed that photographs of the Duke and Duchess on a private holiday look likely to be published overseas.This is a clear breach of the couple's right to privacy." Chi has a notorious track record when it comes to upsetting the Royal Family. The magazine was heavily criticized for being one of the first tabloids to publish pictures of Princess Diana as she lay dying in Paris following her fatal car crash. It also published paparazzi photos showing Kate Middleton sunbathing topless during a French holiday with her husband last year. The magazine, based in Segrate, Milan, is published by Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, the biggest publishing company in Italy.
The Duchess of Cambridge is currently five-months pregnant with her first child. She hit the headlines in December after being admitted to hospital with severe morning sickness. A nurse working at the facility committed suicide after putting through a call from two Australian radio DJ's, falsely believing one of them to be The Queen.
The world can’t get enough of Diana. In most recent news, a rare photo Diana Spencer, prior to the Princess Of Wales era, has surfaced.
In the candid shot, believed to be taken somewhere around 1980, is marked with “not to be published”. An odd choice, because, far from scandalous, all the picture shows is a teenage Diana, lounging at a Swiss ski chalet, with a young man reading behind her. The photo was reportedly acquired by The Daily Mail on February 26, 1981, just days after the announcement of Diana’s engagement to Prince Charles. The picture was sold to the Caren archive years later.
Now the photo with a long history is set be auctioned off, starting January 17th. It is being marketed as a “salacious teenage image of the future princess”. "This would certainly not be the way the Royal Family would have wanted Diana to be presented at that moment," Eric Caren, owner of the Caren Archive, told the Daily Mail. "Given that two days before her engagement had been announced." Everything makes the picture sound extremely in appropriate, but, if you ask us, all it does is make the over-sensationalized Diana look (dare we say it?) normal.
A photograph of Princess Diana reclining in bed with a previously unknown man –before her marriage to Prince Charles – will be sold at auction in America later this year, The Telegraph reveals. The identity of that man in the photograph has now been uncovered, however and is confirmed to be Adam Russell, the great-grandson of the former Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin.
Diana and Adam look to be fairly intimate in the photograph but an interview with the royal biographer Andrew Morton, for ITV News, reveals that although Adam was smitten with the future princess, nothing actually happened between them. The photograph was taken on a ski trip and both Diana and Adam were relaxing together after both being injured. “They kept each other company while the others went skiing and at the end of the holiday Adam was somewhat smitten, but absolutely nothing happened,” Morton told ITV. “He left unspoken the fact that he hoped the friendship between himself and Diana could be renewed and developed upon his return. When he arrived home a year later it was too late. A friend told him: 'You’ve only got one rival - the Prince of Wales.’” It is understood that Mr Russell is now a deer farmer, living in Dorset.
The picture was originally sold to the Daily Mirror in 1981, two days after Diana’s engagement to Prince Charles was announced. However, the publication’s editors decided against using it and the instruction “not to be published” is scrawled across it.
Since Kate Middleton married Prince William, she has been consistently compared to his mother, Princess Diana. With a keen eye on the royal family it's the right time to sell any kind of Princess Di memorabilia. Which is probably why an intimate photo of Diana while on a Ski trip is being sold on Friday in an auction.
It was published in the Daily Star in the 80s, but the man in it had remained unknown. The Royal biographer and Royal correspondent was set the task of working out who it is, and now he has. Speaking to the Daily Mail he has discussed the search. "I... found out that the young man was Adam Russell, the great-grandson of former prime minister Stanley Baldwin, and now a deer farmer in Dorset." He said, "The picture was taken when they were both injured during the skiing holiday... They kept each other company while the others went skiing and, at the end of the holiday, Adam was somewhat smitten. But absolutely nothing happened."
Apparently, Russell's feeling for Diana didn't fade after the trip and "When he arrived home a year later it was too late. A friend told him, 'You've only got one rival - the Prince of Wales.'"
Robbie Williams, David Beckham, Princess Diana, and a few people actually deserving of the honour, have all been included in a 150-strong shortlist of potential replacements for Charles Darwin on the back of the £10 note.
The Bank Of England has released a list of more than 150 great Britons that have been suggested by members of the public for the honour when the new notes are printed. Currently, the Bank of England £10 notes are Series E, but are due to be replaced with the new Series F notes next year, which means a change to the person on the back of the note too.
Whilst the thought of having someone like Becks or Robbie on the English currency may have caused a series of face-palms to occur up and down the country, fortunately it is looking as though someone of genuine historic significance may take the honour instead. Phew!
Elton John has topped a list of 123 songs to have sold over a million copies in Britain, AFP reports. The list was compiled to mark the 60th anniversary of the existence of the singles charts and Elton John’s double A side ‘Something About The Way You Look Tonight’ and ‘Candle In The Wind 1997’ triumphed. The double a-side single was released in 1997, after John re-wrote Candle in the Wind for Princess Diana’s funeral. The release spent five weeks at number one in Britain, selling 4.9 million copies.
In second place was the 1984 charity Band Aid single, ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’ which shifted 3.69 million copies. In 1975, Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ sold 2.36 million. A statement from the Official Charts Company read “It is apt that, as we prepare to celebrate 60 years of the official singles chart in the UK, we do so at a time of unprecedented demand for the single, with this year set to be the biggest year on record for sales of this format.” the company’s managing director Martin Talbot then added “This demand is also translating in to the largest number of million-sellers we have seen -- this is truly the era of the super hit.”
The current decade is on course to become the most successful in history, in terms of breaking the million-seller mark, with 10 tracks already having broken a million, in less than three years.
Dame Helen Mirren is to reprise the role that won her a much-coveted Oscar award by playing Elizabeth II in a new play by Peter Morgan called The Audience. Morgan wrote the script for The Queen that, in 2006, catapulted Mirren to that rarest of acting highs as she scooped the Acadamy's best actress award as she portrayed the head of the UK monarchy.
Morgan's credits on the stage also include the excellently received Frost/Nixon which went on to be made into a feature length film, whilst on the big screen his screenplay credits include The Last King Of Scotland and The Damned United. Following on from The Queen which took place during the days immediately after Princess Diana's death, this new play will convey a series of conversations that the monarch has had with the 12 Prime Ministers to have passed through 10 Downing Street during Elizabeth's time on the throne.
"From Churchill to Cameron, each Prime Minister has used these private conversations as a sounding board and a confessional - sometimes intimate, sometimes explosive," reads a press release re-published by the BBC. The play will be directed by Billy Elliott director Stephen Daldry. The play is due to open in London in February of next year and will run until June.
John Travolta reveals that he almost retired from his acting career following the tragic death of his teenage son, Jett. In an interview with Colin Paterson on BBC Breakfast, the 58-year-old talks about coming back to work for the first time since his son, Jett Travolta, died on vacation in the Bahamas from a fatal seizure aged just 16-years-old. ‘I lost my son a few years ago and I’ve been having quite a time of that and, after 3 years of getting a lot of support from my church and a lot of support from people – fans, family – I decided that it was okay to go back to work’, he said, and added, ‘I’d even thought of retiring at one point because it felt like too much.’
The Grease legend came back to Hollywood to work on the new crime thriller Savages; a movie about two peaceful cannabis growers who are targeted by a Mexican drug organisation and, as a result, are made to set out on a rescue mission to save their girlfriend who has been brutally kidnapped.
Also in the interview, Travolta talks about the impending 35th anniversary of Grease hit ‘Summer Lovin’ dominating the UK singles chart for 16 weeks. ‘It was pretty daunting’, he said. ‘And still I think ‘You’re the One That I Want’ is the biggest duet in history.’ The actor, who danced with the late Diana, Princess Of Wales at the White House, also expressed his sadness for Kate Middleton’s recent topless photos scandal. ‘There is a right to privacy whether you’re famous or not famous’, he said and remarked that there should be a law for that kind of ‘invasion of privacy’ insisting ‘No one would like that.
"Witnesses" have come forward to reveal a mysterious light that caused Princess Diana's driver to lose control of the vehicle.
Since the tragic passing of Diana, Princess of Wales, there have been numerous conspiracy theories and claims about the death, suggesting that it was more than an accident. In fact, the accident has been the basis of many weary theories over the years; a new suggestion in circulation is that Diana and Dodi Fayed were killed when a laser beam was flashed into the eyes of their driver, causing him to lose control of the vehicle and crash.
Princess Diana, imortalised at Madame Tussauds New York
Apparently, a supposed witness has come forward to speak to British detectives about the incident in August 1997. The witness allegedly saw a motorcyclist point a laser directly into the eyes of Diana's chauffeur, HENRI PAUL, from a distance, leading the Mercedes to crash inside the Parisian tunnel, Pont De L'Alma.
Continue reading: A New Conspiracy Theory About Princess Diana Emerges
Date of birth
1st July, 1961