Did Blair lift lines from Queen film for his book?

The Mail on Sunday - - Femail - By Stephen Adams

TONY Blair has been ac­cused of us­ing lines from the film The Queen in his au­to­bi­og­ra­phy.

Scriptwriter Peter Mor­gan said he be­lieved the for­mer Prime Min­is­ter’s mem­ory of real events had be­come ‘blurred’ by watch­ing the movie. Lines in Mr Blair’s 2011 au­to­bi­og­ra­phy, My Jour­ney, were un­can­nily sim­i­lar to those writ­ten for his char­ac­ter in the 2006 film, Mr Mor­gan told Na­tional Pub­lic Ra­dio in the US.

The film fo­cuses on Mr Blair’s au­di­ences with the Queen, played by Dame He­len Mir­ren, im­me­di­ately af­ter the death of Princess Diana in 1997.

It paints a flat­ter­ing pic­ture of the then youth­ful PM, played by Michael Sheen, who deftly con­vinces Her Majesty to re­spond to Diana’s death with greater warmth.

Mr Mor­gan said: ‘In his book, which of course came out many years af­ter we made The Queen, Tony Blair, when re­fer­ring back to that crit­i­cal pe­riod in the im­me­di­ate af­ter­math of Diana’s death, used a num­ber of ex­pres­sions and quo­ta­tions that seemed to me to be very fa­mil­iar be­cause they sounded like my di­a­logue.

‘And I re­mem­ber think­ing, “I can’t have got it that right!” ’

Mr Mor­gan did not cite any spe­cific ex­am­ples. How­ever, in one of the scenes, the Queen’s pri­vate sec­re­tary asks Sheen’s Mr Blair if the phrase ‘the peo­ple’s princess’ is a ‘bit over the top’.

Mr Blair sub­se­quently wrote in his au­to­bi­og­ra­phy: ‘The phrase “peo­ple’s princess” now seems like some­thing from an­other age. And corny. And over the top.’

Mr Blair’s spokesman said: ‘He has never watched The Queen.’


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