Twitter erupts as Kristen Stewart is cast as Princess Diana in new biopic

Ethan Alter
Senior Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

Eight years after playing a gritty fairy tale princess in Snow White and the Huntsman, Kristen Stewart is ascending to for-real royalty in the new drama, Spencer.

Directed by Pablo Larraín, the film depicts the bitter end of the seemingly storybook romance between Prince Charles and Princess Diana, to be played by Stewart.

Prince Charles and Princess Diana in Hawaii. (Photo: Douglas Peebles/Corbis via Getty Images)

“We all grew up, at least I did in my generation, reading and understanding what a fairy tale is,” Larraín recently told Deadline.

“Usually, the prince comes and finds the princess, invites her to become his wife and eventually she becomes queen. That is the fairy tale. When someone decides not to be the queen, and says, ‘I’d rather go and be myself,’ it’s a big, big decision, a fairy tale upside down. I’ve always been very surprised by that and thought it must have been very hard to do. That is the heart of the movie.”

Speaking with Deadline, the director said Stewart — who he describes as “one of the great actors around today” — was a natural choice to play Diana Spencer.

“Kristen can be many things, and she can be very mysterious and very fragile and ultimately very strong as well, which is what we need,” he explained, adding that the film won’t depict Diana’s death in 1997.

“The combination of those elements made me think of her. I think she’s going to do something stunning and intriguing at the same time. She is this force of nature.”

Not everyone on Twitter was persuaded by Larraín’s impassioned case for Stewart’s casting.

“Can we just leave Diana alone. I think she's suffered enough,” one person wrote.

“No. No. Noooo. Please God no! Noooo! Why?! This is a TERRIBLE idea!” was all another could muster.

On the other hand, Stewart’s sizable social media fanbase is ready to book advanced tickets for Spencer, which is set to start filming early next year.

As many noted, the actress is uniquely suited to the role having had to live much of her life in the public eye — as well as the paparazzi’s eyes — ever since the Twilight franchise rocketed her to fame.

And since that series wrapped up in 2012, Stewart has delivered a series of acclaimed performances in movies like Clouds of Sils Maria, Personal Shopper and last year’s Seberg, in which she delivered a career-best star turn as ‘60s movie star, Jean Seberg.

“Kristen Stewart playing Princess Diana in a PABLO FREAKIN’ LARRAÍN FILM? Apocalypse cancelled!” one fan rejoiced.

Another said: “Kristen Stewart playing a famous woman who was doggedly pursued by a press that made a savage feast out of her personal life? I think she'll be able to tap into that.”

Spencer will start shooting in 2021

Sign up to our daily newsletter here to get all the latest news and hacks. Or get in touch at lifestyle.tips@verizonmedia.com.