The Handbook
The Handbook

Late last week it was announced the Twilight star Kristen Stewart has been cast to play Princess Diana and news spread like wildfire. Mainly because this might just be the strangest casting since it was announced Nicholas Cage was going to be playing Joe Exotic aka Tiger King… But, it seems we’re in an era of complete absurdity, what with a pandemic going on, so maybe the casting of Princess Di is fitting of the times we’re currently living in. 

The film, Spencer, will be documenting Diana’s decision to end her marriage with Prince Charles and leave the royal family. 

Intrigued by the prospects of one of the most honest depictions of the royal family to date? Here’s everything we know about Pablo Larraín’s Spencer…

Why was Kristen Stewart chosen?

Kristen Stewart’s career has been an odd one, at least from an outsider’s perspective. 

Stewart’s career is filled with twists and turns. Her journey to stardom began as she shot to fame after starring in the cultural hit series, the Twilight Saga. Following this her roles varied from independent hits to the occasional Hollywood blockbuster, including the 2019 remake of Charlie’s Angels, which didn’t go down critically well. But, if you look beyond her Hollywood career and delve a little deeper, you’ll see that after her Twilight days, Stewart began making a name for herself in European art cinema. She starred and received the César Award for Best Supporting Actress in Clouds of Sils Maria, as well as portraying the iconic French New Wave actress Jean Seberg in Seberg. 

“Kristen is one of the great actors around today,” director Pablo Larraín told Deadline. “To do this well, you need something very important in film, which is mystery. 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.” 

If her career and background in acting have told us anything, it’s that she is able to tackle new, dynamic and even pop on a strong, convincing accent too.

What is it about? 

Larraín’s Spencer will set out to document the weekend that Diana decided her marriage with Prince Charles wasn’t going to work and her decision to leave the royal spotlight. 

The narrative will be set over a three day weekend, at the House of Windsor in the royal’s Sandringham estate in Norfolk, England. It’ll be interesting to see how Larraín captures the mixed emotions and tensions that echoed through the four walls that royal Christmas.

Who’s behind it?

The narrative is the wonderful work of Steven Knight, the man behind the gritty BBC series Peaky Blinders, as well as Serenity and Locke. It’ll be interesting to see how Knight takes on the challenge of portraying the honest and difficult decision faced by Diana. It’ll also be a chance for viewers to see how the events unfolded over just a short three day period. 

At the helm and directing will be Pablo Larraín, known for his beautiful and honest Jackie, the film that documented Jackie Kennedy’s shattered life after the traumatic assassination of her husband. 

While, of course, Larraín didn’t grow up intoxicated by the fanfare of the royal family, he told Deadline that he grew up engulfed by romances and fairy tale stories. And, if the documentation of Jackie was anything to go by, we can rest assured that Princess Diana’s portrayal is in good hands.

When will it be out?

You’re going to have to hold your horses because we’re about to sit in anticipation for at least another year. Spencer is expected to start production early next year.


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