Movie Reviews

Kristen Stewart channels Princess Diana’s turmoil in ‘Spencer’ poster

Written by Megan C. Hills, CNN

A newly unveiled poster for the upcoming Princess Diana biopic, “Spencer,” hints at the behind-the-scenes royal anguish depicted by director Pablo Larraín and lead actress Kristen Stewart.

The promotional image, released by distributor Neon on Wednesday, shows the “Twilight” star as Diana in a voluminous cream dress with her back turned to the camera.

The new “Spencer” poster depicting Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana. Credit: Courtesy Neon

The biopic, which premieres at Venice Film Festival next month ahead of its November release, recounts a Christmas holiday taken at the royal family’s Sandringham estate in 1991.

With Diana’s marriage to Prince Charles having “long since gone cold,” the movie spans three days of “eating and drinking, shooting and hunting” amid “rumors of affairs and a divorce,” according to an official synopsis.

Princess Diana is known to have spent Christmas at Sandringham with other members of the royal family in 1991, though Neon described the film as an “imagining of what might have happened.”

With a screenplay by “Peaky Blinders” creator Steven Knight, the biopic sees Jack Farthing playing Prince Charles. Other stars include Sean Harris, Oscar nominee Sally Hawkins and Timothy Spall.

Related: A look back at Princess Diana’s life in fashion

The dress featured in the poster appears to reference several of Princess Diana’s best-known outfits. The long train evokes her 1981 wedding dress, designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel, though the sparkling details and silhouette may also have been inspired by the famed “Diaghilev” gown (also designed by the Emanuels) that she wore to the premiere of the 1987 James Bond movie “The Living Daylights.”
Another image of Stewart as Princess Diana was released earlier this year. Almost unrecognizable with the late royal’s blonde feathered hairstyle, Stewart is pictured in a bright red coat, black hat with a netted veil and black pussybow blouse — an apparent recreation of the outfit Diana wore to a church service in Sandringham in 1993.
An image released earlier this year which revealed Kristen Stewart's transformation into Princess Diana.

An image released earlier this year which revealed Kristen Stewart’s transformation into Princess Diana. Credit: Neon

Stewart is the latest in a long line of actors to portray the princess, with Naomi Watts famously taking on the role in the 2013 biopic, “Diana.” Emma Corrin also had a recent turn as Diana in the fourth season of “The Crown.” The popular Netflix series, which covers a different time period in each season, has since cast Elizabeth Debicki to play the royal in later years.

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