Rich, protective Dodi appeared perfect match for Diana
August 31, 1997
Web posted at: 4:10 a.m. EDT (0810 GMT)
PARIS (CNN) -- Britain's tabloids had already spent weeks
obsessing over the relationship between Diana, Princess of
Wales, and Harrod's heir Dodi Fayed.
By most accounts, the pair met about 10 years ago, when Fayed
played polo against Diana's ex-husband, Prince Charles.
Recently, the friendship apparently turned into something
As the princess began spending more time with Fayed,
speculation arose that they were in love. Tabloids promptly
found pictures to back the story up.
Newspapers, hungry as always for any news on Diana's personal
life, devoured the story. As the princess and Fayed took a
Mediterranean holiday together, the headlines practically had
Just days ago, newspapers confidently predicted a wedding and
compared the duo to the late Jacqueline Kennedy and Aristotle
Fayed was from a prominent Egyptian family. His father,
Mohamed Al-Fayed, owns the London department store Harrod's
and the Ritz Hotel in Paris.
Fayed himself was a respected film producer, with credits
including the Academy Award-winning "Chariots of Fire" and
"The World According to Garp."
He had homes in New York, London, Paris, Los Angeles and
Switzerland. He'd dated a number of celebrities, including
model Brooke Shields and actress Britt Eklund. Even after
she said she was jilted by Fayed, model Kelly Fisher had nice
things to say about him.
"I found him very down-to-earth, very quiet and charming,"
Kelly told CNN's Larry King Live last week. "I liked him a
Like Diana, he had been married once and divorced.
He was far from the British royalty which Diana was so
visibly a part of for 15 years.
Yet Diana-watchers saw Fayed as the man who could fill a void
in the princess' life. As a multimillionaire, the
42-year-old was able to give the princess the high life she
enjoyed, while sheltering her from the media clamor that
followed her every move.
It may have been his very desire to protect the princess from
paparazzi that caused Sunday's accident.