Tags: Princess | Diana | Forever | Viewed | 'Cash | Crop'

Princess Diana Forever Viewed as 'Cash Crop'

Tuesday, 26 June 2007 12:00 AM

LONDON -- Princess Diana's brother and sons fear she will always be the perfect "cash crop."

With the 10th anniversary of her death looming in August, bookstands and magazine racks are already awash with tales of "The People's Princess" as documentaries rehash her final days.

Her family says that Diana, once the world's most photographed woman and epicenter of a whole celebrity industry, will never be allowed to rest in peace.

"I can never foresee a day when there won't be an interest in Diana," said her brother Charles Spencer who in his funeral oration for Diana castigated the media for hounding her.

"In her life, Diana was a cash crop for a lot of people in terms of writing books and selling stories," Spencer told Reuters, bemoaning the commercialization of so many "kiss and tell" Diana stories.

But, at a decade's distance, Diana's legacy is not all positive.

An undoubted genius at manipulating the media, she had a paradoxical attitude to fame, bemoaning the paparazzi for pursuing her while at the same time assiduously cultivating tabloid contacts.

Sarah Bradford, author of an authoritative biography that avoids any gushing praise of Diana, said of Diana's attitude to fame: "She found it suffocating and she wanted a private life. But the other side of her wanted the celebrity and she would call up reporters herself."

"She could be funny, witty, a lovely friend. She could also turn on people, she could be cruel, she could be hysterical," Bradford added of Diana, who was killed in a car crash in Paris in 1997.

Her sons William and Harry, who are staging a memorial concert next Sunday in London to mark what would have been her 46th birthday, seem to have resigned themselves to the fact that "Di-mania" may never end.

"There are always people out there who want to make money," William told NBC News in an interview to publicize the concert starring Elton John, Tom Jones, Rod Stewart and Duran Duran.

William, second in line to the throne, is worried that people are beginning to think negatively about his late mother and hopes the pop concert will redress the balance.

Making money out of Diana is still a viable proposition and Britain's leading public relations guru Max Clifford, a master at placing celebrity tales in tabloids, said: "I think this will go on and on."

"A load of people have made quite a living out of Diana -- so-called media experts and so-called friends. Ninety percent of them hardly knew her and weren't her friends," he told Reuters.

Former Vanity Fair editor Tina Brown, who spent two years researching the princess and interviewing more than 200 people for her book "The Diana Chronicles", told Reuters: "People make money where they can and I guess they feel so much money can be made out of the princess."

© reuters 2007. All Rights Reserved.

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LONDON -- Princess Diana's brother and sons fear she will always be the perfect "cash crop." With the 10th anniversary of her death looming in August, bookstands and magazine racks are already awash with tales of "The People's Princess" as documentaries rehash her final...
Princess,Diana,Forever,Viewed,'Cash,Crop'
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2007-00-26
Tuesday, 26 June 2007 12:00 AM
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