As with Dion's earlier releases, the album had an overtone of love. Also during this time, Dion released the Francophone album Dion chante Plamondon (1991). The album consisted mostly of covers, but included 4 new songs, which included "Des mots qui sonnent," "Je danse dans ma tte," "Quelqu'un que j'aime, quelqu'un qui m'aime" and "L'amour existe encore". It was originally released in Canada and France during the 1991–1992 period, but then got an international release in 1994, the first French Celine Dion album to do so. "Un garon pas comme les autres (Ziggy)" became a smash hit in France, reaching number 2 and being certified gold. In Quebec, the album was certified Gold the day it was released. To date, Dion chante Plamondon has sold 1.5 million records worldwide.
By 1992 Unison, Cline Dion, and media appearances had propelled Dion to superstardom in North America. She had achieved one of her main objectives: wedging her way into the Anglophone market and achieving fame. However, while she was experiencing rising success in the U.S., her French fans in Canada criticized her for neglecting them. She would later regain her fan base at the Flix Award show, where, after winning "English Artist of the Year", she openly refused to accept the award. She asserted that she was—and would always be—a French, not an English, artist. Apart from her commercial success, there were also changes in Dion's personal life, as Anglil, who was twenty-six years her senior, transitioned from manager to lover. However, the relationship was kept a secret as they both feared that the public would find their relations inappropriate.
1993–1995: Popularity established
In 1993, Dion announced her feelings for her manager by declaring him "the colour of [her] love" in the dedication section of her third Anglophone album The Colour of My Love. However, instead of criticizing their relationship as Dion had feared, fans embraced the couple. Eventually, Anglil and Dion married in an extravagant wedding ceremony in December 1994, which was broadcast live on Canadian television.
As it was dedicated to her manager, the album's motif focused on love and romance. It became her most successful record up to that point, selling more than six million copies in the U.S., two million in Canada, and peaking at number-one in many countries. The album also spawned Dion's first U.S., Canadian, and Australian number-one single "The Power of Love" (a remake of Jennifer Rush's 1985 hit), which would become her signature hit until she reached new career heights in the late 1990s. The single "When I Fall in Love", a duet with Clive Griffin, achieved moderate success on the U.S. and Canadian charts, and was nominated for two Grammy Awards, winning one. The Colour of My Love also became Dion's first major hit in Europe, and in particular the United Kingdom. Both the album and the single "Think Twice" simultaneously occupied the top of the British charts for five consecutive weeks. "Think Twice", which remained at number one for seven weeks, eventually became the fourth single by a female artist to sell in excess of one million copies in the UK, while the album was eventually certified five-times platinum for two-million copies sold.
Dion kept to her French roots and continued to release many Francophone recordings between each English record. Generally, they achieved more credibility than her Anglophone works. She released l'Olympia, a live album that was recorded during one of Dion's concerts at the Olympia Theatre in Paris, in 1994. It had one promotional single, a live version of "Calling You", which peaked at seventy-five on the French Singles Chart. D'eux (also known as The French Album in the United States), was released in 1995, and it would go on to become the best-selling French album of all time. The album was mostly written and produced by Jean-Jacques Goldman, and amassed huge success with the singles "Pour que tu m'aimes encore" and "Je sais pas". "Pour que tu m'aimes encore" reached the Top ten in the UK, a rare accomplishment for a French song, and "Je sais pas" reached number one on the French Singles Chart. These songs would later become "If That's What It Takes" and "I Don't Know" on Dion's next English album, Falling into You.
The mid-1990s was a transitional period for Dion's musical style, as she slowly diverged from strong rock influences and transitioned into a more pop and soul style (though the electric guitar remained a central part of her music). Her songs began with more delicate melodies that used softer instrumentations, and built up to strong climaxes, over which her vocals could be displayed. This new sound received mixed reviews from critics, with Arion Berger of Entertainment Weekly accusing her of preferring vocal acrobatics over dynamics and embarking on a trend of uninspiring, "crowd-pleasing ballads". Resultantly, she earned frequent comparisons to artists such as Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey. According to some critics, The Colour of My Love was not consistent with the themes of her earlier works. However, while critical reviews fluctuated, Dion's releases performed increasingly well on the international charts, and in 1996 she won the World Music Award for "World's Best-selling Canadian Female Recording Artist of the Year" for the third time. By the mid-1990s, she had established herself as one of the best-selling artists in the world, among female performers such as Carey and Houston.
1996–1999: Worldwide commercial success
Falling into You (1996), Dion's fourth Anglophone album, presented the singer at the height of her popularity, and showed a further progression of her music. In an attempt to reach a wider audience, the album combined many elements, such as ornate orchestral frills, African chanting and outlandish musical effects. Additionally, instruments like the violin, Spanish guitar, trombone, the cavaquinho and saxophone created a new sound. The singles encompassed a variety of musical styles. The title track "Falling into You" and "River Deep, Mountain High" (a Tina Turner cover) made prominent use of percussion instruments; "It's All Coming Back to Me Now" (a remake of Jim Steinman's song) and a remake of Eric Carmen's "All by Myself" kept their soft-rock atmosphere, but were combined with the classical sound of the piano; and the number-one single "Because You Loved Me", which was written by Diane Warren, was a ballad that served as the theme to the 1996 film Up Close & Personal.
Falling into You garnered career-best reviews for Dion. While Dan Leroy wrote that it was not very different from her previous work,] and Stephen Holden of The New York Times and Natalie Nichols of the Los Angeles Times wrote that the album was formulaic, other critics, such as Chuck Eddy of Entertainment Weekly, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AMG and Daniel Durchholz, lavished the album as "compelling", "passionate", "stylish", "elegant" and "remarkably well-crafted". Falling Into You became Dion's most critically and commercially successful album: it topped the charts in many countries and became one of the best-selling albums of all time. It also won Grammy Awards for Best Pop Album, and the academy's highest honor Album of the Year. Dion's status on the world stage was further solidified when she was asked to perform "The Power of the Dream" at the opening ceremonies of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. In March 1996, Dion launched the Falling into You Tour in support of her new album, giving concerts around the world for over a year.
Dion followed Falling into You with Let's Talk About Love (1997), which was publicized as its sequel. The recording process took place in London, New York City, and Los Angeles, and featured a host of special guests, such as Barbra Streisand on "Tell Him"; the Bee Gees on "Immortality"; and world-renowned tenor Luciano Pavarotti on "I Hate You Then I Love You". Other musicians included Carole King, Sir George Martin and Jamaican singer Diana King, who added a reggae tinge to "Treat Her Like a Lady". As the name suggests, the album had the same theme as Dion's preceding albums—"love". However, emphasis was also placed on "brotherly love" with "Where Is the Love" and "Let's Talk About Love". The most successful single from the album became the classically influenced ballad "My Heart Will Go On", which was composed by James Horner, and produced by Horner and Walter Afanasieff. Serving as the love theme for the 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, the song topped the charts across the world, and became Dion's signature song. The singles "My Heart Will Go On" and "Think Twice" made her the only female artist in the UK to have two singles to sell more than a million copies. In support of her album, Dion embarked on the Let's Talk About Love Tour between 1998 and 1999.