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Thursday, 15 March, 2001, 17:25 GMT
Costner planned Diana role
Kevin Costner and Michael Parkinson
Costner comes clean to Michael Parkinson
Actor Kevin Costner has confirmed he discussed a film role for Diana, Princess of Wales shortly before her death in 1997.

The admission comes in an interview with Michael Parkinson to be broadcast on Saturday, confirming informal comments that Costner had once made to US media.


The day the script was delivered to me, we lost Diana

Kevin Costner

"I had talked with Princess Di a couple of times," said Costner.

"I explained to her that I was going to try to make this movie for her and she was genuinely interested."

The plan was to film a sequel to The Bodyguard, in which he co-starred with Whitney Houston.

'Excited'

Parkinson asked the actor if his original comments had been reported correctly.

Costner replied: "We talked on the phone and she never committed to saying that she would do the film, but I said that when I was done with this movie, that I was going to show it to her and she was genuinely excited to see it.

Kevin Costner
Costner wanted to break new ground with the film

"We wrote the script and it was pretty exciting. The day the script was delivered to me, we lost Diana."

Costner said he kept the discussions secret for months, but a reporter found out about the exchanges.

Asked why he thought of using Princess Diana in the role, Costner replied: "We set a pattern for Bodyguard by using a real singer in Whitney Houston, and not an actress.

New ground

"The movie maybe had a chance to break new ground, because we think of her - we thought of her - as all of our Princess.

"She was a very graceful woman and it's a great loss to all of us.

"I'm sorry for her husband and her children and maybe this is the last time I'll ever have to talk about it, but she was a truly a beauty."

Costner said the Duchess of York acted as a "real good intermediary" on his behalf in negotiating with the princess.

The original Bodyguard was released in 1992 and became one of the top 150 grossing films of all time, making $122m (82m) in the United States alone.

Costner is in the UK to publicise the release of his new film Thirteen Days, a dramatisation of the 1962 Cuban missile crisis directed by Roger Donaldson.

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See also:

06 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Parkinson attacks TV talk shows
14 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Costner's film role defended
13 Jan 01 | Entertainment
Costner's new tack
07 Sep 00 | Talking Point
Diana three years on - What's her legacy?
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