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Dodi el Fayed


Dodi el Fayed

Chariots of Fire

Dodi el Fayed was born in 1955 in Alexandria as Emad el Din Mohamed el Fayed. He went to St. Marc College in Alexandria then joined the Institut Le Rosey in Switzerland. Later he settled in London with his father Mohamed el Fayed who owns the Harrods chain and the Fulham Football club in London as well as Ritz Hotel in Paris.

As a teenager, El Fayed loved being on the set of films that his father took part in. He was fascinated to watch how every person played their part in making the creative whole. This was the starting point of his first film Breaking Glass (1980) which looks at the fractured rock generation of young people in a bleak and comfortless Britain.

But El Fayed's contribution to British cinema did not end there. He accidentally came across a script called Chariots of Fire at Goldcrest Production Company. The script had been there for sometime doing nothing but gather dust. However, it caught El Fayed's attention and he took it to his father. But he did not need much persuading. The story was about one man who will not compromise his conscience but still wins an Olympic Gold Medal and another man who overcomes anti-Semitism to triumph in the 100 meters. It had nothing very catchy about it. It was later even said "No one except an Egyptian and his son believed such a film would be popular". And it was indeed for Chariots of Fire is the only entirely British film ever to be awarded four Academy awards, including Best Film. The producer David Puttnam said that the film would never have been made without the Fayeds' faith in the project and in all likelihood, the script would have remained on the dusty shelf.

El Fayed then set up his own production company, Allied Stars. He played a major part in the production of FX Murder by Illusion, Parts 1 and 2, starring Brian Brown and Brian Dehenny.

El Fayed died in a road accident in a tunnel in Paris while he and Princess Diana, to whom he was romantically linked, were being chased by paparazzi on motorcycles. Diana also died in the same accident. Mohamed el Fayed erected a memorial to Dodi and Diana at Harrods on April 12, 1998, and unveiled a second, grander memorial in 2005.


1980: Breaking Glass (Executive Producer)
1981: Chariots of Fire (Executive Producer)
1986: F/X – Murder by Illusion (Producer)
1991: Hook (Executive Producer)
1991: F/X2 The Deadly Art (Producer)
1995: The Scarlet Letter (Executive Producer)