Director Danny Boyle blames himself for the failure of 2000 movie THE BEACH, insisting star LEONARDO DiCAPRIO was unfairly targetted by critics.

The film, about backpackers who discover a paradise island, was reviewed unfavourably in comparison to the Alex Garland book on which it was based.

Critics made DiCaprio the scapegoat - but Boyle confesses he made the mistake of taking on a project he had no understanding of.

He tells EMPIRE magazine, "The biggest problem for me was that I had nothing in common with the people on that beach, those backpackers.

"It wasn't Leo, which everyone thinks it was, it wasn't. He's a sweetheart and a brilliant actor. Look at The Aviator.

"But I'm a city boy - if I go to the countryside, after half a day I'm out of my mind, bored. The idea of 'escaping' was alien to me. I really didn't know what I was doing there."

The TRAINSPOTTING director adds, "Actually I remember John Hodge (the film's screenwriter) saying, 'You know, I think I hate these people.'"

08/06/2005 09:16