Kirsten Stewart will be playing Princess Diana.
Quite the project has developed with Chilean director Pablo Larraín, whose films include No, Neruda, and Jackie, the latter of which saw Natalie Portman play former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy. Larraín will be directing Stewart in Spencer, a drama that will cover a critical weekend in the life of Princess Diana. The screenplay comes from Oscar-nominated screenwriter Steven Knight, whose credits include Eastern Promises, Peaky Blinders, Locke and Taboo.
Deadline broke the news, reporting that the film will not be dealing with her tragic death and will instead take place “over three days, in one of her final Christmas holidays in the House of Windsor in their Sandringham estate in Norfolk, England.” It’s around this time that Diana decided that her relationship and marriage with Prince Charles was not working and that she would need to leave the royal life behind.
“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,” Larraín told Deadline. “That’s why the movie is called Spencer, which is the family name she had before she met Charles.”
On why Stewart was chosen for the role, Larraín said: “Kristen can be many things, and she can be very mysterious and very fragile an ultimately very strong as well, which is what we need. The combination of those elements made me think of her. The way she responded to the script and how she is approaching the character, it’s very beautiful to see. I think she’s going to do something stunning and intriguing at the same time.”
Princess Diana has been played on the screen a few times over years. Naomi Watts took on the role in the ill-received 2013 film Diana and Emma Corrin played her in Netflix series The Crown.
Fingers crossed all goes well with this package. It’s being shopped to potential buyers at the upcoming virtual Cannes Market.