Notebook: Your health, Mr Winner

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The Independent Online
I'M worried about Michael Winner. This is a man who is due for a triple heart bypass operation in October - 'Heart Op For Frisky Old Mr Death Wish', News of the World - and yet last week he got so upset that he stormed out of a breakfast television studio because the interviewer was asking him more about his health than his new film. This cannot be good for him, all that anger. Some people even suggested the walk-out was some sort of publicity stunt. If true, this would be a pity, since the press coverage of the incident barely mentioned the film.

So, in the interests of health and safety, let me help. Winner's new film is called Dirty Weekend, it is released on 1 October and it stars Lia Williams, currently in Oleanna at the Royal Court. It is an adaptation of the novel by Helen Zahavi, who says of her heroine, Bella, 'she goes out in the night and hopes the freaks will find her. She's had enough. If they want to batter, rape or humiliate her she wipes them out. I think this is a reasonable response to unreasonable demands.'

Sounds familiar? 'I think Dirty Weekend is a 1990s Death Wish,' says the Winner publicity, 'and much more.' Later on, Lia Williams says of Winner: 'He's a pussycat really, he was very helpful and considerate.' There you are, Michael: now just you relax and take it easy.

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