The Personal Shopper actor will play the Princess of Wales in Pablo Larrain's film about a dramatic weekend, co-starring Timothy Spall
Despite being one of the best actors of her generation, it was difficult to know what to do with the news that Kristen Stewart would be playing Diana, Princess of Wales in Pablo Larrain's upcoming film Spencer, mainly because the choice seemed so… unexpected? Well, here's the first image of Stewart in full-on Lady Di garb, which landed on Twitter today and appears to have been unveiled with the intention of silencing any naysayers claiming she looks nothing like Diana. In this image, at least, she's kind of selling it, though?
Kristen Stewart is Diana, Princess of Wales, in Pablo Larraín’s SPENCER. pic.twitter.com/ldpNLOGhOt
— NEON (@neonrated) January 27, 2021
Spencer, which has now begun filming and unites an all-together fascinating bunch of collaborators, is based on a script written by the vastly inconsistent British writer Steven Knight, who has penned great films like Eastern Promises and Locke and also two of the worst films in recent memory: the Matthew McConaughey fishing movie Serenity, and lockdown “comedy” Locked Down. But Larrain, who's far more consistent and also the man who gave us the very assured and interesting Jackie Onassis movie, Jackie, is behind the camera, and seems like a safe pair of hands. Same goes for Stewart, who rarely gives a dud performance, even when she's in a dud.
A new and official plot synopsis for Spencer – which we now know will also co-star Timothy Spall, Sally Hawkins and Sean Harris in yet-to-be-announced roles – tells us: “December 1991: The Prince and Princess of Wales’ marriage has long since grown cold. Though rumours of affairs and a divorce abound, peace is ordained for the Christmas festivities at Sandringham Estate. There’s eating and drinking, shooting and hunting. Diana knows the game. This year, things will be a whole lot different.”
There's certainly a playful energy to that synopsis, which at least suggests something far more interesting than the stodgy melodrama of, say, The Crown. I'm not saying I've been entirely swayed by this combination of words and image, of course, but I'm not not saying that? At any rate, it can't be worse than that misjudged Diana biopic starring Naomi Watts, which you'd probably forgotten even existed until you read this sentence.
Spencer is slated for release in late 2021.