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The BBC's Nick Higham
"The Beckhams are the new royalty"
 real 56k

Thursday, 12 October, 2000, 16:34 GMT 17:34 UK
Beckham biography hits shops
The Beckhams
The Beckhams settled with Morton out of court
Biographer Andrew Morton's unauthorised account of Victoria and David Beckham has gone on sale across the UK - despite the couple's attempts to have it banned.

Posh & Becks documents the celebrity couple's rise to fame from their youth to the birth of their son, Brooklyn.

It also attempts to reveal the "real" people behind the Beckhams' tightly-controlled public image.

They originally sought to stop publication of the book which they said contained confidential material provided by their former bodyguard, Mark Niblett.

However, lawyers for both sides reached an agreement after hours of negotiation at the High Court in August. Details of the settlement have remained confidential.

In a retaliatory move, Victoria announced on Thursday she was to publish her autobiography in September 2001, based on her diaries for the past couple of years.

She has been working on it since the beginning of this year.

"I thought it was about time to set the record straight," she said.


The Beckhams are the world's most famous celebrity couple - They are almost like royalty

O'Mara Books spokeswoman

The publishers of Morton's book, Patrick O'Mara Books, are anticipating a huge take-up, despite it being released only in hardback at a cost of 16.99.

More than 100,000 copies have been sent out to booksellers around the country. The average printrun for a hardback is less than 10,000.

A spokeswoman for O'Mara commented on the anticipated appetite for the new material about Spice Girl Victoria and Manchester United midfielder David.

"The Beckhams are the world's most famous celebrity couple. They are almost like royalty in the sense that they are the king and queen of popular culture," she said.

"Not a day passes without them appearing in the papers but the point of this book is that it looks behind the headlines."

Uncovered

Morton is the author of previously revealing best-selling biographies Diana: Her True Story and Monica's Story.

In his new book, Morton uses a series of in-depth interviews with media analysts to relate a story of two young people struggling to lead ordinary lives, obsessed with their own privacy.

Andrew Morton
Morton used information supplied by the couple's former bodyguard

However, psychologists also give an insight into why they seem to need to keep themselves in the spotlight.

Extracts from the book have already been published in the glossy magazine Hello!

They suggested that the Beckhams may have 'made up' a story about an attempted snatch of their son - to 'win public sympathy'.

The couple strenuously denied the insinuations, claiming it was a cynical attempt to generate sales for the book.

David was uncovered as a docile house-husband, happy to look after Brooklyn and do the housework. Victoria however was described as reluctant to watch her husband play football.

The book has also suggested that Victoria has had cosmetic surgery and that she was upset after the Spice Girls appeared on the Brits this year.

The Beckhams launched their High Court action against Morton, objecting to 2,500 words - based on information from Niblett - contained within the 60,000 word book.

Niblett is currently barred from disclosing any further details about the couple and their son.

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See also:

12 Oct 00 | Entertainment
Morton and the 'new royals'
29 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Just an ordinary couple?
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