How BBC’s Princess Diana drama will shed new light on her legacy


In 1997, Princess Diana of Wales died in a car crash, sending shockwaves around the world. Beloved by many on both sides of the Atlantic, the princess's death made headlines for months—and sparked a number of conspiracy theories. Twenty years later, the BBC has ordered a 90-minute scripted drama about Princess Diana's death—specifically, how it affected her former subjects.

The project, titled Diana & I, will follow four fictional characters, The Hollywood Reporter says: a mother, a son, a wife, and a boyfriend. Their narratives, which all unfold during the week after Princess Diana's death, will be told "in parallel but at times interlinked." The Fully Monty director Peter Cattaneo will direct, while Jeremy Brock, who penned The Last King of Scotland, will provide the script.

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"I was compelled by the impact that incredible week had on all of us who remember it, whether royalist or not," Brock told T.H.R. "I wanted to explore the lives of four ordinary people and how they internalized their memories of Diana in the aftermath of her death . . . "Diana & I is categorically not a film written in memoriam. It's a celebration of what it's like to be human—good and bad—in the unexpurgated and improvisatory shock of real life."

See photos of Princess Diana:

41 PHOTOS
Princess Diana Style Transformation
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Princess Diana Style Transformation

1962

Lady Diana Spencer, later the wife of Prince Charles, on her first birthday at Park House, Sandringham.

1963

A very young Diana in a fancy pram.

1963

Lady Di at age 2.

1965

Young Lady Diana in a buttoned up dark coat.

1969

Lady Diana at age 8, wearing a matching dress and headband.

1970

Diana on holiday with her family, causal in a sweater and jeans.

1971

Diana let her hair grow long during her youth, here age 10 in a wide-brimmed black hat.

1980

Diana always had a passion for children, here at 19 working as a Nursery Assistant at a Kindergarten school.

1981

Diana and Charles pose on the day of their engagement, showing off her diamond and sapphire engagement ring.

1981

Diana was stunning on her wedding day, with the most glamorous dress and bouquet -- truly fit for a Princess.

1981

The royal couple during their honeymoon in Scotland.

1981

Diana attended an exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum, in a dress designed by Bellville Sassoon.

1982

Princess Diana, pregnant and glowing at a Polo match in Windsor.

1982

The Prince and Princess visit Wales, Diana wearing a suede beret by John Boyd and a coatdress by Arabella Pollen.

1983

Diana was a vision in yellow as she and Charles visited a school in Alice Springs, Australia.

1983

We're loving the pops of pink in Diana's outfit, here while watching Charles play Polo.

1984

Diana talks with Prince Charles, who is on horseback, at a Polo match.

1984

Diana is pretty in pink while attending the ballet Swan Lake.

1985

Diana and a tiny Prince William leaving the Royal Yacht, the Princess in a belted plaid jacket.

1985

Diana laughs with Nancy Reagan, the two ladies looking radiant in hues of red and white.

1986

Diana rests her chin in her hands on the steps of her home at Highgrove.

1986

Diana at a desert picnic in Saudi Arabia, wearing a purple and white outfit by Catherine Walker.

1987

Diana attended Cannes Film Festival, wearing a stunning ice blue gown by Catherine Walker.

1987

Diana was stunning at an evening function during a visit to Germany, wearing a gown by Victor Edelstein.

1988

Princess Diana during a visit to Melbourne.

1988

Diana and Wills at a polo club, the Princess casually dressed in a blazer with the British Lung Foundation logo on the front of her t-shirt.

1989

Diana looked radiant in red and purple while in Hong Kong, the outfit designed by Catherine Walker.

1989

During her visit to Hong Kong, Diana wore this stunning tiara and white dress, later known as the "Elvis Dress."

1990

The Princess of Wales in mint on an official visit to Hungary.

1990

Diana and her boys, attending a church service.  Diana wore a pink and purple suit by Catherine Walker.

1991

Diana wears her favorite designer once again, Catherine Walker, during an official visit in Brazil.

1991

Diana wore this white dress and black jacket designed by Catherine Walker during a visit to Salisbury.

1992

Diana was stunning at a banquet in Seoul, wearing the Spencer family tiara and a gown by Catherine Walker.

1993

Diana looked lovely in this pastel suit, crouching down to speak with a young boy.

1994

Lord Palumbo greets Princess Diana, wearing a short black cocktail dress designed by Christina Stambolian, as she atttends a gala.

1995

Diana visited army barracks, wearing a Versace suit and a hat by Philip Somerville.

1996

The Princess of Wales was gorgeous in this royal purple gown during a visit to Chicago.

1996

Diana visited Washington, dazzling the entire country in this lovely white gown.

1997

Diana was lovely in this pale blue cocktail dress by Catherine Walker, attending a charity reception.

1997

Diana, Princess of Wales, was radiant in red during another visit to Washington, D.C.

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Given that we are approaching the 20th anniversary of Princess Diana's death, it is no surprise that BBC's project is far from the first retrospective film, TV series, or special announced this year. On Monday, Gayle King will anchor a two-hour prime-time special for CBS about the princess's life and legacy, while HBO and ITV, along with ABC, have documentaries on the way. Even Ryan Murphy is getting in on the Princess Diana train this year: FeudSeason 2 will be all about Diana and Prince Charles.

More from Vanity Fair:

Pics of Royals Skiing Through the Years

Remembering Princess Diana's Glamorous Style

13 Photos That Prove William and Kate Are a Perfect Couple

Prince Harry's Best Style Moments

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