Here's everything you need to know about the upcoming Spencer film...
A new Princess Diana film is coming and it’s set to detail a weekend in the iconic royal’s life – in particular, when Diana decided that her marriage to Prince Charles wasn’t making her happy.
Perhaps a little unexpectedly, former Twilight actress Kristen Stewart, 30, was announced to be playing Diana in the biopic about her life in the early 1990s.
Teaser photographs of Stewart as Princess Diana emerged recently however, putting any casting confusion comments to bed. The two women look identical.
Just weeks later, photographs of Kristen Stewart filming have been released and the resemblance is uncanny.
So now, that we’re all getting excited about Spencer, here is everything to expect from the upcoming movie about the much-loved princess…
What’s the Spencer film plot?
The story is said to take place over three days during one of Diana’s final Christmases at the Queen’s Sandringham estate in Norfolk. It was during this weekend in 1992 when Diana (née Diana Spencer) decided to divorce her husband, Prince Charles, and decided that she didn’t want to be the future Queen.
The film’s director Pablo Larraín revealed the film will not delve into Diana’s tragic death, but instead focus on her marriage to Charles and the love she had for her children, Prince William and Prince Harry.
He expanded, ‘Diana is such a powerful icon, where millions and millions of people, not just women, but many people around the world felt empathy toward her in her life.’
‘We decided to get into a story about identity, and around how a woman decides somehow, not to be the queen. She’s a woman who, in the journey of the movie, decides and realises that she wants to be the woman she was before she met Charles.’
What is Princess Diana’s real-life story?
Charles and Diana were married from July 29, 1981 to August 28, 1996, and there has been endless speculation that their union was an unhappy one.
In 2018, veteran royal reporter Robert Jobson claimed the Prince wanted to pull out of his wedding to Diana when he realised how ‘incompatible’ the pair were.
Five years into the marriage, the couple’s incompatibility and age difference of almost 13 years became visible and damaging. Charles resumed his relationship with his former girlfriend Camilla Parker Bowles.
At the age of just 36, Diana died in the early hours of 31 August 1997, after being injured in a car crash in Paris. Her partner at the time, Dodi Fayed, and their driver, Henri Paul, were pronounced dead at the scene.
Who else is cast in the Spencer film?
Kristen Stewart was the first name confirmed to star in Spencer, with the film’s director Pablo telling Deadline: ‘Kristen can be many things, and she can be very mysterious and very fragile and ultimately very strong as well, which is what we need.’
He went on to say, ‘I’ve seen movies from Kristen that are so diverse it’s incredible, showing different layers and her diversity and strength as an actress. We’re very happy to have her, she’s very committed. As a filmmaker, when you have someone who can hold such a weight, dramatic and narrative weight just with her eyes, then you have the strong lead who can deliver what we are looking for.’
It has since been confirmed that Timothy Spall, Sally Hawkins and Sean Harris have also been cast in the biopic, although it has not been announced who they will be playing.
What about the Spencer film production team?
Director and producer Pablo has directed seven feature films and co-directed one television series, including Academy Award-nominated films No and Jackie.
‘I’ve always been intrigued and fascinated by the Royal Family and how things are in that culture, which we don’t have where I come from,” the Chilean director told Deadline.
‘It’s about finding herself, about understanding that possibly the most important thing for her is to be well, and to be with herself and by herself. That’s why the movie is called Spencer, which is the family name she had before she met Charles.’
Meanwhile British screenwriter Steven Knight, the creator of Peaky Blinders, is penning the script.
Who else has played Princess Diana?
Most recently, Emma Corrin has portrayed Diana in the fourth season of The Crown, a depiction that she has been heavily praised for.
Oscar-nominated actress Naomi Watts played the role in the 2013 drama Diana, that focused on the last two years of her life, and Lesley Harcourt played the princess in the film: William & Catherine in 2011.
Prior, Genevieve O’Reilly starred in the docu-drama Diana: Last Days Of A Princess in 2007.
When will Spencer be released?
Filming reportedly started in Germany this year, followed by additional filming in the UK, so the film won’t be released for a while. Autumn 2021 is the expected release date for Spencer, with 2022 marking the 25th anniversary of Diana’s death.
We will continue to update this story.