Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 16 November 2019

'The Crown' is looking for its Princess Diana: here are 8 stars we think could take on the role

The Netflix show is searching for a 'staggeringly talented young actress', and we have some ideas

Princess Diana will be introduced in the fourth season of 'The Crown'. Rex
Princess Diana will be introduced in the fourth season of 'The Crown'. Rex

We've already been introduced to Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip and a raft of other members of Britain's royal family in hit Netflix series The Crown. And one of the monarchy's most famed faces is set to soon be welcomed into the award-winning drama.

Casting directors for the show, which charts the British monarch's long-standing reign, are looking for a star to take on the role of Diana, Princess of Wales, for the fourth series.

An advert for the role allegedly says the Netflix show is looking for a "staggeringly talented young actress", according to The Telegraph, who will portray the late royal between the ages of 18 to 22.

Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales, 1981. Getty
Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales on their wedding day in 1981. Getty

Lady Diana Spencer was just 19 years old and working as a nursery teacher's assistant when she became engaged to Prince Charles, with the two tying the knot later that year.

Though they later divorced in 1996, after welcoming children William and Harry, The Crown will document the earliest years of the royals' marriage in its fourth season.

The show has just finished filming its latest series, with Oscar winner Olivia Colman taking over the reins from Claire Foy to play Queen Elizabeth II throughout seasons three and four.

Season three of The Crown, which will air later this year, also sees Matt Smith replaced by Outlander star Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip, and Helena Bonham Carter take over the role of Princess Margaret from Vanessa Kirby. Season four is expected to begin in the 1970s, when Margaret Thatcher started her tenure as Britain's longest-serving prime minister of the century.

Olivia Colman in season three of 'The Crown'. Courtesy Netflix
Olivia Colman in 'The Crown'. Courtesy Netflix

So, who will play Diana?

The royal, who died in a car crash in Paris in 1997, has previously been immortalised on screen by Naomi Watts, Nicola Formby and Serena Scott Thomas. While blockbuster names like Margot Robbie have been touted for The Crown's version, we round up eight actresses we think could also take on the much-anticipated role of the People's Princess.

Note: While we've just looked at stars who could portray Diana in her earlier years, Michelle Williams, Carey Mulligan, Mia Wasikowska and Haley Bennett could also make great casting choices for season five.

Florence Pugh

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 28: Florence Pugh attends the Chloe show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2019/2020 on February 28, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
Florence Pugh. Getty

She's one of the hot favourites to play Princess Di, and the English actress has certainly proved her range in shows such as The Little Drummer Girl and films including 2016's Lady Macbeth. She was most recently in the wrestling comedy-drama Fighting with My Family. She won rave reviews for her aforementioned performances, and yet is still considered an emerging actress.

With her face not widely splashed across screens, billboards and magazines covers just yet, this could give her an edge when it comes to taking on the role of such a photographed woman. While someone like Robbie is perhaps hard to unsee as "Hollywood actress Margot Robbie", perhaps Pugh has a better chance of fully embodying the role of Princess Diana in a viewer's eye.

Saoirse Ronan

epa06580904 Saoirse Ronan arrives for the 90th annual Academy Awards ceremony at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California, USA, 04 March 2018. The Oscars are presented for outstanding individual or collective efforts in 24 categories in filmmaking. EPA/MIKE NELSON
Saoirse Ronan. EPA

The versatile Lady Bird star has portrayed a royal before (as the formidable Mary Stuart in 2018's Mary Queen of Scots), and has won acclaim for her turns in Atonement, Brooklyn and The Lovely Bones. The 24-year-old has certainly demonstrated she has the emotional sensitivity to play the bashful teen Diana, and would bring an empathy and charm to the role of the beloved royal.

Elizabeth Debicki

Elizabeth Debicki arrives at the Governors Awards on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
Elizabeth Debick. Jordan Strauss / Invision / AP

The Night Manager actress bears more than a passing resemblance to the late princess, so at least the make-up team wouldn't have as much work to do. The 28-year-old also delivered a particularly compelling, tender performance in 2018's Widows, signaling a poise and quiet strength that she could imbue in the role of Diana.

Dianna Agron

The youthful 32-year-old American rose to fame in musical TV series Glee, and while she she's not been a regular face on screens in recent years, she'd certainly be an interesting choice. Her soft voice and delicate features resemble that of Diana, and she's been married to British musician Winston Marshall since 2016, so perfecting an English accent might not be too troublesome.

Lucy Boynton

Lucy Boynton, left, and Rami Malek arrive at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
Lucy Boynton. Jordan Strauss / Invision / AP

The Bohemian Rhapsody actress is another rumoured favourite for the role, and, like Pugh, is a relatively unknown face by Hollywood standards (in the best possible way). The 25-year-old, who was born in New York and raised in London, has a serene, girlish appeal, but brought a strength and stability to the Freddie Mercury biopic that would lend itself well to the role of Diana.

Sophie Turner

91st Academy Awards – Vanity Fair – Beverly Hills, California, U.S., February 24, 2019 – Sophie Turner. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok
Sophie Turner. Reuters

The Game of Thrones actress has certainly proved her worth as a softly spoken yet temerous leader as Sansa Stark, making her a strong contender for the role of Diana. Thanks to the relentless tragedies and shocks thrown at her character in GoT, she'd definitely be able to keep pace with any dramatic scenes between Charles, Diana and Diana's new in-laws.

Lily James

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 04: Lily James attends the Into Film Award 2019 at Odeon Luxe Leicester Square on March 04, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by John Phillips/Getty Images)
Lily James. Getty

The Downton Abbey star just has a excitable, childlike innocence to her, as seen in Cinderella and Mamma Mia, and could bring out Diana's joyful, playful side perfectly on camera.

Katherine Langford

PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 03: Katherine Langford attends the Valentino show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2019/2020 on March 03, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
Katherine Langford. Getty

It's a left-field choice, but Australian actress impressed with her range (and dexterous accent) in Netflix's 13 Reasons Why as emotionally tortured Hannah Baker. Her captivating performance demonstrated she could encapsulate a keen sense of heartbreak, which would come in handy when portraying Princess Diana and Prince Charles's tumultuous relationship.

Updated: March 14, 2019 02:50 PM

SHARE

SHARE