Paris Hilton lights up Toronto film festival

Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:45pm EDT
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By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO (Reuters) - It's not easy being Paris Hilton, always being photographed by the paparazzi doing things as mundane as ordering a hamburger at a drive-in.

"Paris, Not France," a documentary about the life and business of being Hilton debuted on Tuesday at the Toronto International Film Festival. From one perspective, it doesn't seem like much fun being a 27-year-old global celebrity.

The movie from director Adria Petty, daughter of rocker Tom Petty, shows Hilton at work on red carpets and at home with her family and friends. Petty spent a year documenting Hilton's life and came away with an insider's view.

Hilton, derided by some as a spoiled rich kid with little real talent but adored by her fans, is given largely sympathetic treatment.

"I had a conception that she might not be very smart before I met her. I didn't really go in with too many prejudices against her, but just like everyone else I wondered what she was all about," Petty said in an interview on Wednesday.

"As soon as I met her, I knew within a minute that she was a cool chick, a smart girl, and hard-working. She certainly wasn't lounging on a chaise eating cherries."

Petty said the documentary is designed not to sway Hilton doubters but to entertain. Petty wanted to make this generation's "Truth or Dare," referring to Madonna's behind-the-scenes look at her 1990 Blond Ambition Tour.

It wasn't that hard to get Hilton to talk candidly, Petty said.   Continued...

<p>Paris Hilton and director Adria Petty (R) arrive at the "Paris, Not France" screening at the 33rd Toronto International Film Festival September 9, 2008. REUTERS/ Mike Cassese</p>