Diane (1956)




Director:    David Miller

Starring:     Lana Turner (Diane de Poitiers), Pedro Armendáriz (Francis I), Roger Moore (Prince Henri), Marisa Pavan (Catherine de Medici).

Countess Diane de Breze, mistress of King Henri II,  is surrounded by key political players: Prince Henri; King Francis I; Catherine de Medici.  Unfortunately, the move place fast and loose with the real history.



Spoiler Warning:




Historical Background: 


Diane de Poitiers  -   the mistress of French King Henri II, who ruled from 1547 to 1559.   


1498-1515  --  reign of King Louis XII of France. 

1499 (September 3)  --  birth of Diane de Poitiers, the daughter of Jean de Poitiers in the château de Saint-Vallier, in the town of Saint-Vallier, Drôme,in the Rhône-Alpes region of France.

She married Louis de Brézé, seigneur d'Anet, a grandson of King Charles VII.  Her husband served the court of King François I. She gained the title of Duchesse de Valentinois. 

When her husband died, she returned to the court. 

1515-1547  -- reign of King Francis I

1534  --  at age 35, Diane became the mistress of the then 16-year-old Henri d'Orléans, later to be King Henri II. 

King Henri II married Catherine de' Medici, but Diane de Poitiers remained his lifelong true love.

1538  --  Diane and the king had one daughter, Diane, Duchess d'AngoulLme.  Her daughter later married François, Duke of Montmorency.

1547  --  Henri d'Orléans becomes King Henri II of France and rules until 1559..

Diane was intelligent and was a trusted adviser to the King.  She, for instance, wrote many of his official letters, and signed them HenriDiane.  She even had charge of the royal children's educations.  Pope Paul III sent the new Queen Catherine the "Golden Rose", but made sure to give a pearl necklace to Diane. 

Queen Catherine was very jealous and she had a right to be:  Henri gave her the Crown Jewels of France, had the Château d'Anet built for her, and gave her the beautiful Château Chenonceau.

1559  --  Henri was critically wounded in a jousting tournament.  Now Catherine gained control of Henri at last.  She restricted access to him, never summoned Diane to the king's bedside even though the king called out for her and  refused to allow Diane to attend the funeral. Immediately thereafter, Catherine banished Diane  to the Château de Chaumont.

1559-1560   --  reign of King Francis II of France. 

Diane soon moved on to her chateau in Anet, Eure-et-Loir.

1560-1574  --  reign of King Charles IX.

1566  --  Diane died at Anet, Eure-et-Loir.


for more info:  see Queen Margot (1994)



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