In May, Lord Dyson finally completed his investigation into Princess Diana’s Panorama interview, which was conducted by Martin Bashir in 1995. At the time, the interview was arguably the most-watched “royal” thing ever – it was Diana discussing Charles’ affair with Camilla, her affair with James Hewitt, and how Diana didn’t believe Charles was up for the job as king. Diana did real damage to the monarchy and real damage to Charles in that interview. And the Windsors have been trying to discredit Diana and the Panorama interview ever since. Prince William willingly allowed himself to be used as a tool to discredit his own mother – after the Dyson report came out and Martin Bashir’s shady tactics were revealed, William stood up and called his mother paranoid and delusional and blamed Bashir for his parents’ poor relationship. Which… lol.
It was said at the time that this was all part of a larger right-wing campaign to discredit the BBC entirely and that William was also being used in that campaign as well. It looked like all was forgiven – the BBC promised to never air the Diana interview again (putting toothpaste back in the tube) and after all that, William went to the BBC for his big Keenshot programming this month. Except that Diana’s Panorama interview will not be forgotten. Netflix’s The Crown will feature a big storyline about the Panorama interview.
Netflix is set to dramatise Princess Diana’s bombshell Panorama interview with disgraced BBC journalist Martin Bashir – despite Prince William’s demands that the interview be taken off air. The fifth season of the streaming giant’s popular series The Crown will include an entire episode focusing on the Royal’s controversial sit-down with Bashir in 1995, in which she sensationally said ‘there were three of us in the marriage’ – a reference to Charles and Camilla.
Netflix is understood to have spent millions on the episode, which insiders told The Sun will be pivotal to the upcoming installment of the show, which often garners controversy. However, the decision to recreate the Panorama interview puts Netflix at odds with William, who called for the groundbreaking scenes to never to be aired again.
Earlier this year, the Duke of Cambridge hit out at Bashir’s shocking tactics – first exposed by The Mail on Sunday and later documented in a damning independent report by the former Master of the Rolls in May – to obtain his exclusive with his late mother. The inquiry plunged the Corporation into one of the worst crises in its history, with Diana’s two sons William and Harry accusing it of ruining their mother’s life with its ‘deceitful’ interview and helping to bring about the tragic chain of events that led to her death two years later.
However, senior sources insisted Netflix, which struck a £112million deal with Harry and Meghan after they quit royal duties, is going ahead with the special episode.
The insiders said: ‘The Crown’s creators see the interview as the keystone moment in series five. To the writers, the stormy marriage between Charles and Di led up to her outpouring on Panorama, and the aftermath of that decision defined her final months. They are making a huge investment in that. The Crown has a track record of delving into areas of the Royal Family’s history they’d rather be left alone.’
Ingrid Seward, editor-in-chief of Majesty Magazine, said: ‘This would be extremely upsetting and the only protection William has is not to watch it.’
Royal commentator Margaret Holder added: ‘William was dismayed at the time. It is also embarrassing for Harry.’
To be fair, technically Netflix isn’t airing the original Panorama interview, they’re dramatizing it using actors. Elizabeth Debicki is going to be a spectacular Diana, and she’s merely going to, you know, ACT. Besides, we knew that Season 5 of The Crown would include this interview as soon as the season was announced! It takes place during John Major’s turn as prime minister, 1990-1997. The Panorama interview was a HUGE story during that time. I’m curious about whether they’ll also feature Prince Charles’ interview with Jonathan Dimbleby, which actually took place a year before Diana’s interview.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Netflix.