The film, directed by Pablo Larraín and written by Steven Knight, will focus on a ‘pivotal’ weekend at Sandringham and stars Kristen Stewart as the lead, with Timothy Spall, Sally Hawkins and Sean Harris also appearing.
The Geman castle will play set to Sandringham, with filming taking place inside the castle in the fireplace room and on the upper floor.
Filming appears to be underway for the highly-anticipated Princess Diana biopic Spencer as crews have been spotted at Schloss Marquardt castle in Potsdam, Germany.
The film, directed by Pablo Larraín and written by Steven Knight, will focus on a ‘pivotal’ weekend at Sandringham and stars Kristen Stewart (pictured) as the lead, with Timothy Spall, Sally Hawkins and Sean Harris also appearing.
New pictures show crews getting the snow-laden castle ready with lighting and vans spotted outside.
It comes as a royal biographer who knew the late Princess’ ‘well’ said that it was ‘inevitable’ The Firm won’t enjoy the picture ‘at all’.
‘I knew her as a person, it’s inevitable that the royals won’t like the biopic at all,’ Jobson, who has written multiple books about the royal, told Us Weekly.
‘They won’t like it, but they would have expected it. It is the truth, I think the most important thing is how well the actress can interpret the role. We’ll have to wait and see on that.
The Geman castle will play set to Sandringham, with filming taking place inside the castle in the fireplace room and on the upper floor
Pictured: Film crews putting up lights outside the castle which will be the stage for Sandringham
In June last year it was revealed that the Twilight actress, 30, would depict the late royal in a film which dramatises a ‘critical’ few days at the Norfolk estate in the early 1990s, when Diana decided that her marriage to Prince Charles wasn’t working.
It follows the moments in which the Princess of Wales realised she ‘needed to veer from a path that put her in line to one day be queen’, and is said to take place during one of Diana’s final Christmases at the House of Windsor in Sandringham.
Jobson added that the photographs of Stewart looked ‘remarkably like Diana’ and ‘uncanny’.
‘I think what’s more important is the authenticity of the portrayal, and we’ll have to see how that develops because my understanding is it’s going to be a good script and it’s going to be a good premise, but it might not necessarily have actually happened in the way they’re saying,’ he continued.
It comes as new accuracy row has broken out over the upcoming film with royal experts branding it inaccurate because it’s set on a weekend at Sandringham which never happened. Princess Diana and Prince Harry are pictured
It comes as new accuracy row has broken out over the upcoming film with royal experts branding it inaccurate because it’s set on a weekend at Sandringham which never happened.
According to Jobson and fellow biographer Ingrid Seward, Diana had stopped visiting the estate before the period in which the drama is set.
Robert added that Diana had already made the decision regarding her marriage ‘years before’, while Ingrid pointed out that the princess ‘never wanted a divorce’.
It follows widespread criticism of Netflix drama The Crown, which saw politicians, experts and friends of the Royal Family call for a disclaimer to warn viewers that the show twists the truth. Friends of close senior royals including Prince Charles even went so far as to accuse it of ‘trolling on a Hollywood budget’.
In June last year it was revealed that the Twilight actress, 30, would depict the late royal in a film which dramatises a ‘critical’ few days at the Norfolk estate in the early 1990s, when Diana decided that her marriage to Prince Charles wasn’t working. Princess Diana is pictured in the 1990s
Kristen, 30, left, said she hasn’t been excited about a role in a long time ahead of her portrayal of Princess Diana (right in 1994)
Speaking on True Royalty TV ‘s The Royal Beat, Robert said: ‘I don’t even think she was there that weekend. She wasn’t even at Sandringham, on this supposed weekend.
‘The film will suggest this is where the decision was made to divorce, but she never made that decision. I didn’t think she was at Sandringham after 1990 and this was set in 1991.’
Ingrid added: ‘The film is based on three days at Sandringham, and the period that it is based on, Diana wasn’t going to Sandringham anymore.
‘It’s probably going to just play up what life was like at Sandringham, which would be quite interesting for a lot of people to see. It has a good setting.’
The screenplay of Spencer was written by Steven Knight, who worked on Peaky Blinders, so Robert predicted the film will be ‘explosive and rock n roll’.
Like The Crown, the latest series of which was branded a ‘spiteful attack on the Royal Family by making them look like inept idiots’ by Angela Levin, author of Harry: Biography of a Prince, Robert suggested this film will also mix fact with fiction.
‘I think it’s a shame because there’s so much out there that we know that is true, but then again they need that scope to be able to do a fictional drama like this,’ he said.
Actresses that have played Princess Diana
Naomi Watts as Princess Diana in the 2013 movie Diana
Naomi Watts in Diana (2013)
British-Australian actress Naomi Watts famously played the Princess of Wales in the 2013 movie Diana which was derided by critics at the time. ‘Diana might have been flawed and scheming and love-starved, but this film doesn’t help explain that. Nor does it illuminate the common touch and humanitarian side that endeared her to a global audience,’ film critic Suzanne S. Brown wrote. Even Naomi herself would later admit that the film was a ‘sinking ship’.
Emma Corrin in The Crown (2020)
Newcomer Emma Corrin was cast as Princess Diana in the fourth season of The Crown in 2019. Fans have yet to see the actress in the role though, as streaming giant Netflix has not released the next season of the show. However, the actress was pictured filming on location in Manchester in February earlier this year.
Newcomer: Emma Corrin was cast as Princess Diana in the fourth season of The Crown in 2019
Lesley Harcourt in William & Catherine (2011)
Scottish actress Lesley Harcourt – who has had roles in British crime drama Taggart – played Diana in this cheesy Hallmark movie in 2011. The TV drama was described as ‘superficial fun’ by critics and not taken very seriously.
Genevieve O’Reilly in Diana: Last Days Of A Princess (2007)
This Channel 5 docu-drama starred Irish actress Genevieve O’Reilly, who is perhaps best known for her work in the Star Wars franchise as Mon Mothma. It certainly fared better than other projects, with a review in The New York Times praising it: ‘It portrays her as needy but manipulative, loving but flawed — in other words, as a human being. Blending documentary techniques and scripted drama, it gives a surprisingly credible picture of the princess’s last summer.’
Made-for-TV: Irish actress Genevieve O’Reilly played Diana in 2007’s Diana: Last Days Of A Princess
Serena Scott Thomas in Diana: Her True Story (1993)
Based on the publication of the same name by Andrew Morton, British actress and model Serena Scott Thomas also found some praise for her portrayal in this made-for-TV movie. Entertainment Weekly said Serena showed ‘great charm’ in the role, but said she ‘more closely resembles a softer version of Murphy Brown‘s Faith Ford than she does the angular princess.’ Interestingly, Serena later played Carole Middleton in the 2011 TV movie William & Kate, depicting the courtship between the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Amy Seccombe in Diana: A Tribute To The People’s Princess (1998)
This ill-advised Princess Diana tribute was released just a year after her death, and starred little known actress Amy Seccombe for the part. The project was largely ignored upon release and thought to be distasteful. Seccombe’s only other role after the TV movie was playing a medic on the TV show Operation Good Guys.
Cheesy: Amy Seccombe and George Jackos play Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed in the TV movie The People’s Princess
Julie Cox in Princess In Love (1996)
Based on James Hewitt’s book, this American TV movie follows the relationship that blossomed himself between Diana. The role went to British actress Julie Cox who was recently seen in the crime drama Broadchurch. The title failed to have much impact upon its release.
Caroline Bliss in Charles And Diana: A Royal Love Story (1982)
This 1982 American made-for-television biographical drama starred Catherine Oxenberg as Diana, Christopher Baines as Prince Charles, and Hollywood royalty Olivia de Havilland as Queen Elizabeth. It originally aired September 20, 1982 on CBS. One damning review from The Washington Post called it a piece of ‘slack-jawed heraldic voyeurism incapable of, and apparently uninterested in, transforming remote news figures into believable mortals.’
US versions: (L-R) Caroline Bliss IN Charles And Diana: A Royal Love Story (1982), AND Julie Cox in Princess In Love (1996)