The below is an unedited draft of an entry that was eventually published in Secrets & Lies. As always, any comments or feedback is most welcome.
PETER SELLERS BELIEVED HE COULD TALK TO THE DEAD AND WAS ONE OF PRINCESS MARGARET'S LOVERS
If you want a prime example of celebrities living vast, bizarre and secret lives that the press do not report on until they are dead, there is none better than the life of Peter Sellers. Not a word on his interest in occultism, cocaine use and sex sessions with a member of the British royal family went reported whilst he was alive despite all of these activities being well known to Fleet Street reporters.
Hints may have been dropped about his superstitious nature, his mood swings and close friendship with Her Royal Highness Princess Margaret, but nothing was written about what was really going on behind the celebrity mask.
After a serious falling out of favour in Hollywood in 1964, Seller’s ‘died’ of a heart attack. His heart stopped beating and he was rushed to hospital where his heart stopped beating a further seven times. It became apparent after his recovery that Sellers was a changed man. His knowledge of the occult and magical elements of Freemasonry, previously one of his many interests, became a key focus of his life. He constructed an altar to his dead mother whom he believed he was in communication with and regularly conducted occult rites. Sellers also believed that he was in contact with the spirit of his dead dog and performed magic rituals on the cliffs at Hastings.
Seeing less of old friends such as ex-Goons colleagues Spike Milligan and Harry Secombe, his adoption of a much more mystical view of life coincided with becoming an almost Austin Powers style figure renowned for a succession of affairs with beautiful women, owning bizarre gadgets and maintaining a fleet of more than 50 sports cars.
After separating from his second wife Britt Ekland in 1968, he became the lover of Princess Margaret and even entertained the idea that they could marry. Despite boasting of marathon, cocaine-fuelled sex sessions with HRH and hinting that they were also joined by one of Margaret’s lesbian lovers, Sellers made the fatal mistake of introducing the Princess to Warren Beatty. It was an introduction that led directly to Margaret’s affair with Beatty and Sellers being ousted from her royal bed.