BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: Entertainment
Front Page 
UK Politics 
TV and Radio 
New Media 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Andrew Morton spoke to the BBC's Jatinder Sidhu
"They have contradictory and conflicting characters"
 real 28k

Andrew Morton
"I don't think I invaded their privacy at all"
 real 28k

Thursday, 12 October, 2000, 15:54 GMT 16:54 UK
Morton and the 'new royals'
Posh & Becks
Posh & Becks is published by Patrick O'Mara Books
As Andrew Morton's unauthorised account of Victoria and David Beckham hit the bookshops, BBC News Online spoke to him about the controversial biography.

Andrew Morton says he wrote Posh & Becks to understand a new form of celebrity.

"People have been saying to me they are the new royalty...I thought, let's see how royal they are," said the former royal correspondent and biographer of the late Diana, Princess of Wales.

He felt the couple had become an item worthy of investigation in their own right when he heard of university courses on "Posh and Becks culture".

"There's a sense that they've gone beyond the reaches of normal celebrity to be defined as some kind of metaphor for life in Britain today," he said.

A former Fleet street journalist, Morton acheived huge success with his book on Princess Diana and also helped to write Monica Lewinsky's biography.


He became embroiled in legal wrangles when the Beckhams tried, unsuccessfully, to prevent their unauthorised biography being published.

But he denied he invaded their privacy in order to write the book.

Andrew Morton collaborated with Monica Lewinsky on her autobiography
Andrew Morton collaborated with Monica Lewinsky on her autobiography
"I'm interested in the way they present themselves in public. I'm not the kind of biographer that goes into people's bedrooms," he said.

"Ironically I don't think I invaded their privacy at all. They are the ones that invade their privacy on a daily basis. They exploit their privacy for publicity and for profit.

"Victoria says she wants a new privacy law, and at the same time they make commercial arrangements with paparazzi photographers to take pictures of them.

"For Victoria celebrity seems to be the driving force for everything she says and does.

"It seems as though they are irritated by the presence of the photographers and yet they've engineered and contrived the whole operation.

"She is the more dominant character in the relationship. She's a very hard working, determined young woman with a shrewd business head on her shoulders.

"At the same time she seems more insecure and vulnerable despite that sense of dynamism."

'Role model'

David Beckham is depicted in the book as a much more likeable individual - partly because Morton is more convinced of his talents.

"David seems to be more content in his skin. He's always had a natural talent for football. For him celebrity is secondary to his primary passion in life, which is football.

"David is a role model for a new generation of fathers who are not afraid to express their love and devotion and affection for their sons," he said.

Morton admires the Beckhams as parents, and hopes their marriage will survive the stresses of life in the limelight.

"They have contradictory and conflicting characters. But in private they as loving and as tactile as they say they are in public," he said.

He hopes the public will be interested in his analysis of "the sociology and the psychology of fame".

But how will fans respond to the probing of the veneer of celebrity?

"Fans will be intrigued and informed. They'll be interested in looking at the Beckhams in the round - from their birth through to the present day. As individuals and as a couple.

"It's a straightforward biography to that extent."

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console

Posh book
Andrew Morton's inside story on Posh and Becks
AUDIO/VIDEO  real 56k

A controversial biography of David and Victoria Beckham is released
Celebrity exposed

See also:

29 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Just an ordinary couple?
Links to more Entertainment stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Entertainment stories