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Film / My Dinner with Hervé

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My Dinner with Hervé is a 2018 HBO biopic drama loosely based on the final days of dwarf actor Hervé Villechaize, starring Peter Dinklage as Villechaize and Jamie Dornan.

In 1993, Danny Tate is a recovering alcoholic and journalist. While other people at the paper are interviewing big names and ex-presidents, Danny's latest assignment is a back page fluff piece on washed up TV star Hervé Villechaize, of Fantasy Island fame.

Flying out to L.A. for the interview, Danny asks the typical questions of the spiraling ex-TV star. But soon Herve invites Danny out with him so he can get the real questions and real answers.

What follows is a night of chaos, drink and past regrets as Herve deals with the wreck his life has become, and Danny deals with issues of his own.

This film provides examples of:

  • Historical Villain Upgrade: Averted - although Villechaize feuded with his Fantasy Island co-star Ricardo Montalbán in the film as in Real Life, Montalban (played by Andy García) is depicted in a generally positive light. Montalban's grandson even has a cameo in the film.
  • Really Gets Around: Hervé is a chronic womanizer, to put it mildly.
  • Self-Serving Memory: Hervé is chronically guilty of this, always tailoring past events to his own perception.
  • Very Loosely Based on a True Story:
    • Hervé is born in Paris under Allied bombings in the film. He was actually born in Montauban.
    • Hervé's younger brother Philippe pointed out several inaccuracies, such as the back pains he got after doing a stunt himself in The Man with the Golden Gun that prevented him from doing things such as going through a cat flap (which Peter Dinklage does in the film), their mother not going to his wedding in the USA — she did go to it, or Hervé throwing money on the ground (he was actually more careful about such things).
    • There was no Danny Tate. The interview over dinner was conducted by director Sacha Gervasi.
  • White-Dwarf Starlet: Hervé is a pop culture memory by the time the film is set. Making a living doing commercials, car show appearances and placating people on the street with his catchphrase.