Anyone who knows me well, knows how fascinated I am with the royal family and in particular, my love for The Queen. Every televised royal event, from weddings to public services and royal reporting on TV, I’ll certainly be watching! One royal that I never really knew much about was Diana, Princess of Wales. I knew people simply loved her beyond words and the tragic way she died, but nothing much more. Watching the brand new series of The Crown really opened my eyes to this lady.
The Crown’s Diana
Emma Corrin does an impeccable job of portraying the Princess down to a T, never exhibiting a caricature but an uncanny resemblance. Her voice, mannerisms and likeness in unreal, and while those involved continue to state the series is fiction based on real people, you can’t help but wonder how much of it is true. After watching a series of documentaries and interviews lately, it’s clear that The Crown is closer to fact than fiction.
I became so engrossed in The Crown this series, after enjoying but feeling slightly disappointed with series three. The fourth series spans from 1977 – 1990, focusing heavily on Diana, Princess of Wales and her extraordinary life as the newest spouse of the Royal family. I felt saddened watching each episode as it uncovered disputes and a seemingly horrible marriage, it appeared to be a very hard life for the people’s Princess. I felt great sympathy for the ‘character’ of Diana and the show made me think a little differently of Prince Charles and the now Duchess of Cornwall too. I was of course, like most aware that the Duchess was the Prince’s long-time love, but the fact made so publicly that they never really ended their relationship was sad on Diana’s behalf.
The Biography Diana
Last Christmas, I asked for the biography so famously written by Andrew Morton: Diana, Her True Story. I wanted to learn more about the people’s princess then, but even now I’ve not got round to reading it yet. It’s on my to-do list before 2021.
What fascinates me, is that this book was originally published with Morton claiming ‘those close to the Princess’ had provided him with content. Later though, Diana herself admitted to the material coming from her. She wanted to tell her side of the story, and I’m very intrigued to read it.
The Documentary Diana
Diana: In Her Own Words is a fascinating film than left me in tears. The documentary shows footage of the people’s Princess throughout the years, accompanied by voiceover interviews from 1992-1993. The interviews are secret recordings with her that were intended to be used with her permission by Author Andrew Morton to write her biography. Hearing The Princess of Wales describe events of her life, her relationship with the media and Prince Charles are truly heart breaking. I feel compelled to now read more about this remarkable lady who lead a hard life in the spotlight.
Most of the stories told in this film highlight events depicted in The Crown series four, from her bulimia, to ‘the bracelet’ to Prince Charles’ relationship with Camilla Parker-Bowles. If you are looking for an in-depth factual look at Princess Diana’s royal working life, this is a very informative, but sad account to watch.
The documentary aired on Channel 4, but is now available to stream on Netflix. It gained a mixed reception amid concerns it would cause distress for her family and should not be in the public domain back in 2017. It was watched by over 4.1 million and no doubt will soon be watched by many more.
Diana: Her Fashion Story – A 2017 Exhibition
On a trip to London I also ventured to Kensington Palace to view the brand new fashion exhibition. I remember how packed the exhibition was, full of people speaking a variety of languages, from all over the world, all with one common interest, Princess Diana. Some of her most well-known and photographed clothing was loaned to the exhibition by Prince William and Prince Harry in celebration of her life, 20 years since her passing.
Here are some photos I took during my visit: