Cannes: Nicole Kidman Reassures Monaco's Royal Family There Is 'No Malice' in 'Grace of Monaco'
Director Olivier Dahan and his star Nicole Kidman were eager to downplay all the controversy that has surrounded their new film Grace of Monaco as they answered questions at the Cannes Film Festival’s first press conference today.
Their film focuses on the state of the marriage between former actress Grace Kelly and Monaco’s Prince Rainier III when, in 1962, she was tempted to return to Hollywood while he was fending off French attempts to dictate tax policy to his tiny principality. Rainier and Grace’s children – Prince Albert II, Princess Caroline and Princess Stephanie – have objected to the film, even though they have not seen it, saying, “It recounts one rewritten, needlessly glamorized page in the history of Monaco and its family with both major historical inaccuracies and a series of purely fictional scenes.”
Asked to respond, Kidman said, “Obviously, I feel sad because I think the film has no malice towards the family or particularly towards Grace or Rainier. It’s fictionalized obviously. It is not a biopic. There is the essence of truth, but with a lot of these things you take dramatic license at times. But I understand also because it’s their mother and father and they’re trying to protect the privacy of their mother and father.” Pausing for a moment, she admitted, “So, it’s awkward, is what it is." But, she added, "I still have respect and I want them to know that the performance was done with love and I want them to know if they ever do see it, they would see that there is an enormous amount of affection for both their parents and the love story of their parents.”
For his part, Dahan deflected questions about his battle with his American distributor Harvey Weinstein, who demanded changes to the film which the director refused to make. Ultimately, the version that is being shown at Cannes also will be the version that the Weinstein Company releases, he said.
Asked if Weinstein still planned to release another version, Dahan said, “No, Harvey will use that version [referring to the one that had just screened]. If some changes need to be made we will make them together. There is no dispute.”