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New BBC Fonteyn movie "Margot"


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#1 dirac

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:09 PM

A film based on the latter part of Margot Fonteyn's life and career is planned.

http://www.dailymail...article-1172991

But the film, being made for BBC4 by director Otto Bathurst (who made last year's superb Criminal Justice TV drama) and screen writer Amanda Coe, will also delve into the dark side of her marriage to Dr Roberto Arias, a shady diplomat with Panamanian credentials and an eye for women who weren't his wife.


Seems to me this can only be a mediocre effort at best. Apart from anything else, casting a non-dancer as Fonteyn means the dance sequences will have to be shot under less than optimal circumstances, and Duff seems about as appropriate a choice for Fonteyn as her hubby James McAvoy would be for Tito or Rudi. Oh, well.

#2 Helene

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:23 PM

James McAvoy was terrific in the British TV series "Shameless". He's a lot more versatile than his romantic lead roles would suggest, and he's very adept with a dark side underneath surface charm.

#3 dirac

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:28 PM

I didn't mean he was a bad or limited actor. I meant he was unsuited for either role - not the type in the one case, and not a dancer in the other. (There are other ways, too, but it's off topic. Shouldn't have mentioned it in the first place, sorry, but I thought it was a passing remark that wouldn't inspire debate. Let's talk about the film, everyone. :yahoo:)

#4 leonid17

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:31 PM

A film based on the latter part of Margot Fonteyn's life and career is planned.

http://www.dailymail...article-1172991

But the film, being made for BBC4 by director Otto Bathurst (who made last year's superb Criminal Justice TV drama) and screen writer Amanda Coe, will also delve into the dark side of her marriage to Dr Roberto Arias, a shady diplomat with Panamanian credentials and an eye for women who weren't his wife.


Seems to me this can only be a mediocre effort at best. Apart from anything else, casting a non-dancer as Fonteyn means the dance sequences will have to be shot under less than optimal circumstances, and Duff seems about as appropriate a choice for Fonteyn as her hubby James McAvoy would be for Tito or Rudi. Oh, well.


I have written at length elsewhere on this subject and will concur with dirac's, "Seems to me this can only be a mediocre effort at best."

#5 dirac

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:34 PM

Looking on the bright side, it's possible for even less than great movies about ballet to inspire new interest in the art. Perhaps this one will, as well.

#6 Helene

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:39 PM

I can't say I'm inspired by the photograph of Huff: it's hard to imagine how she'd physicalize Fonteyn's offstage carriage and grace.

#7 bart

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 03:06 PM

This is of interest.

Just in case, Covent Garden stars, past and present, are being considered to 'dance' the role.

They include the likes of Alina Cojocaru, for instance, or Darcy Bussell - although a balletomane observed, wickedly, that Ms Bussell might be too 'robust' to make us think of Fonteyn's slim, elegant physique.


Maybe we need a new "Everything Else Ballet" thread: who should dance Fonteyn?

#8 duffster

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 06:06 PM

Alexandra Ansanelli

#9 vipa

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 06:24 PM

Alexandra Ansanelli



YES - Any maybe act it too. I have not idea if AA can act but she has an elegant quality the Fonteyn had & is beautiful.

#10 Helene

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 06:30 PM

Alexandra Ansanelli



YES - Any maybe act it too. I have not idea if AA can act but she has an elegant quality the Fonteyn had & is beautiful.

That was my first thought -- cast her to do both. But they'd have to shoot her dancing from the waist up, unless she spent a lot of time trying to move like Fonteyn. She moves her legs and feet very differently than Fonteyn.

#11 dirac

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 09:35 AM

She moves her legs and feet very differently than Fonteyn.


True, but that would only make a difference to the likes of us, perhaps. The general audience would see a beautiful ballerina with a general resemblance to Fonteyn, and that would be enough.

I saw Duff in The Magdalene Sisters and yet another miniseries on Elizabeth I, and while she seems a good actress I canít imagine her as Fonteyn.

YES - Any maybe act it too. I have not idea if AA can act but she has an elegant quality the Fonteyn had & is beautiful.


I find that often as not in ballet-themed films the ballet dancers are at least as good as any professional actors in the cast (and sometimes better)!

I have not seen Tamara Rojo, but would she be appropriate?

#12 Natalia

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 10:05 AM

It should have been Anne Hathaway, who so resembles Fonteyn in looks, IMO.

#13 Old Fashioned

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 10:25 AM

I don't see Ansanelli bearing much of a resemblance to Fonteyn looks wise, other than they both have dark hair. Rojo may be a better fit (again, only basing this on looks). Duff looks nothing like Fonteyn, but I can't really think of another actress who could be a good fit. Emily Mortimer and Emily Blunt are too tall (although about the same height as Duff, according to their imdb bios). Maybe Natalie Portman?

#14 Helene

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 10:30 AM

I saw Ansanelli do a fabulous imitation of Fonteyn in the opening of the Fonteyn movement of "Homage to the Queen" last year: same eyes, same head tilt, same neck. It was quite remarkable.

#15 dirac

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 10:32 AM

I don't see Ansanelli bearing much of a resemblance to Fonteyn looks wise, other than they both have dark hair.


True, but Ansanelli is a dancer. (If the makers of "Isadora" back in the Sixties had cast Lynn Seymour as in the title role, she wouldn't have been an exact physical match, but in spirit and style she would have been as close to Isadora as anyone could have gotten.)

Duff also strikes me as a little young for the movie's time frame described in the article - she will be playing the middle aged Fonteyn, not the young dancer. So in the best of all possible worlds a suitable mature ballerina would be cast in the role, although no one springs to mind offhand.

It may be, of course, that the filmmakers don't intend on showing much if any dancing, in which case the project would indeed be worth very little....

Thanks for commenting, everyone! Keep posting.

(Edited to note that my comment was in response to Old Fashioned's post and not Helene's, which I didn't see before posting, and so I've altered this post slightly to reflect that.)

Edited by dirac, 28 April 2009 - 06:14 PM.



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