Kristen Stewart made her debut as Princess Diana.
Principal photography began on Pablo Larrain’s ‘Spencer’, with the production unveiling Stewart’s first glimpse as a young royal.
Written by ‘Peaky Blinders’ creator Steven Knight, the film focuses on a weekend in the life of Princess Diana, as she spends Christmas holidays with the Royal Family at the Sandringham Estate in Norfolk, and decides to leave her marriage to Prince Charles.
Filming will take place in Germany and the UK and a launch in fall 2021 is planned. 2022 marks the 25th anniversary of Diana’s death.
The cast also includes BAFTA nominee Timothy Spall (“Mr. Turner”), Oscar nominee Sally Hawkins (“The Shape of Water”) and Sean Harris (“Mission: Impossible”).
The film is produced by Juan de Dios Larraín (“Jackie”) for Fabula Films, Jonas Dornbach and Janine Jackowski (“Toni Erdmann”) for Komplizen Film and BAFTA winner and Oscar nominee Paul Webster (“Anna Karenina”) for Shoebox Movies.
“’Spencer is a dive into an emotional imagination of who Diana was at a turning point in her life,” said Stewart. “It’s a physical statement of the sum of its parts, which begins with his first name: Spencer. It is a painful effort for her to come to herself, as Diana struggles to hold onto what Spencer’s name means to her.
“We are extremely grateful for the support of our distributors around the world, our partners and funders who have shown an extraordinary commitment to us in these extraordinary times. With Kristen Stewart, Steven Knight and the rest of our fantastic team in front and behind the camera, we bring “Spencer” to the world. It’s an independent film made for the big screen about an iconic woman’s own declaration of independence. We couldn’t be more excited, ”said producers Jonas Dornbach, Janine Jackowski, Juan de Dios Larraín, Paul Webster and Pablo Larraín.
The executive producers are Tom Quinn, Jeff Deutchman and Christina Zisa for Neon and Michael Bloom, Maria Zuckerman and Ryan Heller for Topic Studios.
FilmNation Entertainment handled international sales with all key territories selling outside of the Cannes Virtual Market. The CAA Media Finance group sold to Neon and Topic Studios for distribution in the United States, STXinternational will distribute the film in the United Kingdom, France, Italy and the Benelux and DCM will distribute it in Germany.
Other territories sold include: Australia / NZ (Roadshow), Latin America, Spain and Portugal (Sun), South Korea (Green Narae), Japan (Tohokushina), Scandinavia (Scanbox), Canada (Elevation), CIS / Baltic ( Central partnership), Eastern Europe (Forum), Middle East (Italy), Singapore (Shaw), Greece / Cyprus (Spentzos), Hong Kong (Golden Scene), India / Pakistan (Impact Films India), Israel ( Lev), Turkey (FilmArti), South Africa (Empire), Taiwan (Moviecloud) and Thailand (M Pictures).
“Working on the script was a pleasure. I think it’s a different perspective on a story we don’t all know well, but we all feel like we’re part of it now, ”Knight said. Variety in an exclusive interview last week. “And I just found it all fascinating. Talking to people who knew her and trying to get a view of this person – who really was that person – who was an ordinary person in extraordinary situations, is how I think of her.
Knight said he didn’t watch Netflix’s hit series “The Crown” because he didn’t want his perspective to be influenced by the series. Season 4 of “The Crown”, which began airing in 2020, focuses primarily on the relationship between Lady Diana (played by Emma Corrin) and Prince Charles (Josh O’Connor). The season was in the spotlight as relatives of real individuals depicted in the drama spoke about their performances.
British Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden and Lady Diana’s brother Charles Spencer later demanded that ‘The Crown’ carry a warning that it was a fictional show, but Netflix has refuse.
Spencer is supported by the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF), the medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, the German Federal Film Board (FFA), the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW and HessenFilm und Medien.