Kristen Stewart just snagged a coveted role, and it’s probably not what you expect. In a far departure from her Twilight days, the actress is set to star as Princess Diana in the upcoming drama Spencer. As if that news wasn’t exciting enough in itself, the storyline sounds like the telling of Lady Di that we’ve all been waiting for — one that strays from the fairytale narrative to capture the fierce, complex, nuanced woman that the Princess of Wales really was. Here’s what we know so far.
On Wednesday, Deadline broke the casting news along with a few other pertinent details. The biopic, steered by Jackie director Pablo Larraín and written by Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight, is set in the early ‘90s over a span of only three days. It will center on one of Diana’s final Christmas holidays in the House of Windsor, at a point when the tension in her marriage to Prince Charles had reached a breaking point.
“Diana is such a powerful icon, where 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,” explained Larraín. “She’s a woman who, in the journey of the movie, decides and realizes that she wants to be the woman she was before she met Charles.”
The director continued, “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… it’s a romantic story of a woman going through difficult times who finds the light and the solution.”
In addition to an obvious focus on Charles, the film will also center around Diana’s sons, Prince William and Prince Harry. “Diana was many things, but chief among them, she was a great mother. This is the story of a woman who understands the most important thing for her life is her own children,” said Larraín.
Kristen Stewart playing Princess Diana in a PABLO FREAKIN’ LARRAÍN FILM? Apocalypse cancelled!
— Robbie Collin (@robbiereviews) June 17, 2020
And if you’re having trouble envisioning Stewart as Diana, rest assured Larraín has zero doubts she’ll do the beloved royal justice. “To do this well, you need something very important in film, which is mystery. Kristen can be many things, and she can very mysterious and very fragile and ultimately very strong as well, which is what we need,” Larraín insisted, revealing, “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. She is this force of nature.”
We’re sold! Of course, it’ll be a while before we see Stewart in action, as production isn’t expected to start until early 2021. Still, this sounds like it’ll be worth the wait.
Before you go, revisit 18 iconic photos of Princess Diana.