Dodi Fayed

Egyptian film producer and partner of Diana, Princess of Wales (1955–1997)

Suzanne Gregard
(m. 1986; div. 1987)
Parents
  • Mohamed Al-Fayed
  • Samira Khashoggi
Relatives
  • Omar Al-Fayed (half-brother)
  • Jamal Khashoggi (cousin)

Emad El-Din Mohamed Abdel Mena'em Fayed[b] (/ˈf.ɛd/; 15 April 1955[a] – 31 August 1997), commonly known as Dodi Fayed,[c] was an Egyptian film producer and the eldest child of the businessman Mohamed Al-Fayed. He was romantically involved with Diana, Princess of Wales, when they both died in a car crash in Paris on 31 August 1997.

Date of birth

Most sources state that Fayed was born on 15 April 1955.[1][2][3][4][5] This is also the date that appears on his gravestone.[6] However, since 2022, some sources have stated that he was born on 17 April.[7][8][9][10]

Early life and education

Fayed was born in Alexandria, Egypt, the eldest child of Mohamed Al Fayed (1929–2023), who was to later become the owner of Harrods department store, Fulham Football Club, and the Hôtel Ritz Paris.[11] Fayed's mother was Saudi author of Turkish descent, Samira Khashoggi (1935–1986),[12] daughter of Muhammad Khashoggi and sister of Saudi billionaire arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi. He was a first cousin of the late Washington Post Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was assassinated in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul in 2018.[13] Fayed had four half siblings from his father's second marriage to Heini Wathén: Omar, Camilla, Karim, and Jasmine Fayed.[12][14]

Fayed was a student at Collège Saint Marc in Alexandria before attending the Institut Le Rosey in Rolle, Switzerland.[15][16] He also briefly attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.[11] After completing his education, he was an attaché at the United Arab Emirates Embassy in London.[16]

Film production

Through his family's production company, Allied Stars, Fayed was an executive producer of the films Chariots of Fire, Breaking Glass, F/X, F/X2, Hook, and The Scarlet Letter, and an executive creative consultant for F/X: The Series. He also worked for his father on Harrods' marketing.[2]

Personal life

In 1986, Fayed married model Suzanne Gregard. They divorced eight months later.[2]

According to her memoir, Babylon Confidential, Claudia Christian had an on-again, off-again romance with Fayed.[17]

In 1997, Fayed reportedly became engaged to American model Kelly Fisher and bought a house in Malibu, California, for himself and Fisher, with money from his father.[18] In July 1997, Fayed became romantically involved with Diana, Princess of Wales, after entertaining her on his yacht Cujo.[19][20] Fisher learned of Fayed's relationship with Diana only after seeing paparazzi photos of the two embracing. Fisher then announced that she was filing a breach of contract suit against him, saying he had "led her emotionally all the way up to the altar and abandoned her when they were almost there," and that he "threw her love away in a callous way with no regard for her whatsoever".[21] Fayed denied that he was ever engaged to Fisher.[22] Fisher dropped the lawsuit shortly after Fayed's death.[23]

Death

Innocent Victims, one of two memorials in Harrods

In the early hours of 31 August 1997, Diana and Fayed died in a car crash in the Pont de l'Alma underpass in Paris. They had stopped in Paris en route to London after spending nine days on holiday in the French and Italian Rivieras aboard his family's yacht, the Jonikal. Neither Fayed nor Diana was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.[24] The only survivor of the crash was bodyguard Trevor Rees-Jones, who was seriously injured but was conscious after the crash; he was the only one wearing a seatbelt according to some reports. Fayed was pronounced dead at the scene on removal from the wreckage.

Investigations by French and British police concluded that their chauffeur, Henri Paul, was driving under the influence of alcohol and prescription drugs; paparazzi chasing the couple are also believed to have contributed to the accident.[25][26] Fayed's father, Mohamed Al-Fayed, said that the couple "were executed by MI6 agents".[27] Fayed's former spokesman, Michael Cole, has said that the couple became engaged before their deaths.[28]

Fayed was originally interred in Brookwood Cemetery near Woking, Surrey, but was re-interred in October 1997 on the grounds of Barrow Green Court, the family estate in Oxted, Surrey.[29][30]

Legacy

Memorial to Diana, Princess of Wales, and Dodi Fayed in Harrods

Fayed's father erected two memorials to his son and Diana at Harrods. The first, unveiled on 12 April 1998, consists of photos of them behind a pyramid-shaped display containing a wine glass still smudged with lipstick from Diana's final dinner, and a ring Fayed purchased the day before they died.[31] The second, unveiled in 2005 and titled Innocent Victims, is a 3-metre (9.8-foot) high bronze statue of the two dancing on a beach, beneath the wings of an albatross.[32]

The memorials were designed by Bill Mitchell, a close friend of Fayed's father who had worked for the Fayed family for more than 40 years, including as a designer at Harrods.[33] In January 2018, it was announced that the statue would be returned to the Al-Fayed family.[34]

Films and television

Fayed was portrayed by Cas Anvar in the 2013 film Diana. He was portrayed in seasons 5 and 6 of The Crown by Khalid Abdalla.[35] In 2023, Abdalla also received a Critics' Choice Television Award nomination.[36]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b See § Date of birth.
  2. ^ Arabic: عماد الدين محمد عبد المنعم الفايد, romanizedʿImād ed-Dīn Muḥammad ʿAbd el-Munʿim el-Fāyid. Egyptian Arabic pronunciation: [ʕeˈmæːd ɪdˈdiːn mæˈħæmmæd ʕæbdelˈmenʕem elˈfæːjed].
  3. ^ Arabic: دودى الفايد. Egyptian Arabic pronunciation: [ˈduːdi elˈfæːjed].

References

  1. ^ BNF 13182078t.
  2. ^ a b c Vallance, Tom (2 September 1997). "Obituary: Dodi Fayed". The Independent. Archived from the original on 21 August 2009.
  3. ^ Snell, Kate (2000). Diana: Her Last Love. London: Granada Media. p. 179. ISBN 0-233-99887-X.
  4. ^ Bedell Smith, Sally (24 May 2011). "Dodi's Life in the Fast Lane". Vanity Fair. Archived from the original on 27 September 2022.
  5. ^ Gibson, Kelsie (9 November 2022). "All About Dodi Fayed, Princess Diana's Love Interest at the Time of Their Deaths". People. Archived from the original on 9 November 2022.
  6. ^ Photograph of Fayed's gravestone.
  7. ^ Peikert, Mark (13 November 2022). "Dodi Fayed's Adventures in Hollywood". Town & Country. Archived from the original on 13 November 2022.
  8. ^ Crawford-Smith, James (14 November 2022). "Who is Dodi Fayed—Princess Diana, 'Chariots of Fire', Kelly and 'The Crown'". Newsweek. Archived from the original on 14 November 2022.
  9. ^ Payne, Millie (15 November 2022). "The Crown: Who Is Dodi Fayed?". Grazia. Archived from the original on 15 November 2022.
  10. ^ Barrand, Rochelle (2 September 2023). "Dodi Fayed: who was Princess Diana's partner, were they engaged and how much was Mohamed Al Fayed's son worth?". Yahoo! News. Archived from the original on 23 November 2023.
  11. ^ a b Peretti, Jacques (11 January 2009). "Death of a playboy". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 26 May 2013.
  12. ^ a b Bradford, Sarah (2007), Diana, Penguin, ISBN 978-0-14-190673-7, Fayed had risen from his lowly beginnings through his connection with the Kashoggi family, Saudis of Turkish descent, who owed their position to their connection with the rulers of Saudi Arabia. In 1954 he married Samira, the 16-year-old sister of Adnan Kashoggi, his contemporary, son of the head of the family Dr Mohamed Kashoggi. Their son, Emad, always known as 'Dodi', had been born in 1955...
  13. ^ Heimbrod, Camille (20 October 2018). "Princess Diana's 'Secret' Connection To Missing Saudi Journalist Jamal Khashoggi Revealed". International Business Times.
  14. ^ Hubbard, Kim (25 August 1997). "Howdy, Dodi!". People. 48 (8). Retrieved 26 May 2013.
  15. ^ "Dodi Fayed: Biography". biography.com. 14 November 2023.
  16. ^ a b "Fayed saw himself as an Onassis". augusta.com. 4 September 1997. Archived from the original on 10 November 2013. Retrieved 10 November 2013.
  17. ^ Claudia Christian, Morgan Grant Buchanan (2012). Babylon Confidential: A Memoir of Love, Sex, and Addiction. BenBella Books, Inc. p. 91. ISBN 978-1-937856-07-6.
  18. ^ Dominick Dunne (19 May 2010). "Two Ladies, Two Yachts, and a Billionaire". Vanity Fair. New York. Retrieved 11 October 2013.
  19. ^ "Yacht that Princess Diana spent last summer on with Dodi Al-Fayed sinks to bottom of Mediterranean". Sky News. Retrieved 4 August 2023.
  20. ^ "Diana's Darling Dodi letters are read". Associated Press. 14 December 2007. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 11 October 2013 – via HighBeam Research.
  21. ^ "Model claims Fayed jilted her for Diana". The Independent. 15 August 1997.
  22. ^ "What to Know About Dodi Fayed's Ex-Fiancée Kelly Fisher". TIME. 16 November 2023. Retrieved 20 November 2023.
  23. ^ "Kelly Fisher Drops Lawsuit Against Dodi". Associated Press. 1 September 1997.
  24. ^ Read, Carly (22 September 2018). "Diana shock claim: Princess would be alive if she had worn seatbelt – pathologist". Daily Express. Express Newspapers. Retrieved 18 July 2020.
  25. ^ Paul Webster and Stuart Millar "Diana verdict sparks Fayed appeal" Archived 12 June 2018 at the Wayback Machine, The Guardian, 4 September 1999
  26. ^ Rayner, Gordon (7 April 2008). "Diana jury blames paparazzi and Henri Paul for her 'unlawful killing'". Daily Telegraph. London. Archived from the original on 12 January 2022. Retrieved 12 October 2013.
  27. ^ Mohamed al-Fayed: The outsider Archived 21 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine The Independent, 6 October 2007
  28. ^ Diana and Dodi 'were engaged' Archived 4 September 2017 at the Wayback Machine BBC
  29. ^ Moyes, Jojo (16 October 1997). "Dodi Fayed's remains re-buried in secret". The Independent. independent.co.uk. Retrieved 27 June 2017.
  30. ^ Kelly, Kieran (2 September 2023). "Mohamed Al-Fayed buried next to son on family estate almost 26 years after Dodi died in car crash with Princess Diana". LBC News. Archived from the original on 2 September 2023.
  31. ^ "Jeweler: Diana, Dodi picked engagement ring – CNN". Archived from the original on 19 February 2008.
  32. ^ Harrods unveils Diana, Dodi statue Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine, CNN, 1 September 2005.
  33. ^ Princes lead Diana remembrance Archived 15 August 2017 at the Wayback Machine BBC
  34. ^ Johnston, Chris (13 January 2018). "'Tacky' statue of Diana and Dodi Fayed to be removed from Harrods". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 13 January 2018. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  35. ^ Hibbs, James (16 November 2023). "Who is Khalid Abdalla? Meet Dodi Fayed actor in The Crown". Radio Times. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  36. ^ "TELEVISION NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED FOR THE 29TH ANNUAL CRITICS CHOICE AWARDS – Critics Choice Awards". Retrieved 6 December 2023.

External links

  • Dodi Fayed at IMDb
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